Responsibilities Under the Portability Process

Responsibilities Under the Portability Process 

Initial PHA Responsibilities 

The initial PHA’s responsibilities as it relates to the portability process include the following: 

  1. Providing the family with information about portability 

PHAs must provide an explanation of how portability works as part of both the oral briefing and the briefing packet to all families. PHAs must explain to families who elect to move under portability how differences in the receiving PHA’s policies could affect the family’s assistance. For example, the receiving PHA may have different policies concerning screening criteria, subsidy standards, payment standards, or more stringent policies related to screening for criminal backgrounds. The initial PHA is not required to research specific policies, however, the participant must be made aware of the possible differences and their impact.  

  1. Determining eligibility 

Once a family informs the initial PHA of their desire to port out, and where they want to move to, the initial PHA determines whether or not the family is  eligible to move. 

  1. Contacting the receiving PHA 

Once the receiving PHA is selected, the initial PHA must contact the receiving PHA to determine whether the receiving PHA will bill or absorb the family’s voucher. This information may be critical in determining whether the initial PHA approves or denies the portability request. 

  1. Providing the contact information for the receiving PHA to the family 

Once a portability request is approved, the initial PHA is responsible for providing contact information.  

  1. Providing the receiving PHA with required documentation 

The initial PHA must send the receiving PHA the required documents. Initial PHAs are encouraged to provide these at the same time they contact the receiving PHA to notify them that a family is approved to port to the receiving PHA jurisdiction. Required documents include: 

  • Form HUD-52665, Family Portability Information. The initial PHA completes and sends Part I of this form to the receiving PHA. Take a look at that form here:  
  • The most recent HUD Form-50058, Family Report, as well as income information in a format similar to the Form HUD-50058 so that the information is easily available for use by the receiving PHA. Take a look at that form here:  
  • All related verification information.  
  • A copy of the voucher signed by the participant and the PHA. Although not required, it is a best practice for the initial PHA to provide the receiving PHA the following:  
    • Citizenship status 
    • Copies of photo IDs 
    • Information on the family’s participation in the family self-sufficiency program
    • Information on reasonable accommodation and/or Earned Income Disallowance (EID). 

Receiving PHA Responsibilities 

  1. To administer assistance 

A receiving PHA cannot refuse to assist incoming portable families or direct them to another neighboring PHA for assistance. 

  1. Communication with the initial PHA 

The receiving PHA is required to respond, notify, and communicate any necessary updates or changes to the initial PHA. These communications include, but are not limited to the following: 

  • Responding to the initial PHA’s notification of the family’s decision to port out 
  • If the family’s voucher expires before they submit a Request for Tenancy Approval 
  • If a family’s voucher is extended 
  • When the family leases a unit
  • Sending the initial PHA a copy of the family’s updated 50058 form at the time of recertification 
  • If a family’s voucher is absorbed 
  • If a family is terminated from the program  
  1. Decision to bill or absorb 

The receiving PHA is required to make a decision to either bill the subsidy or absorb the portable family into its own HCV program. The receiving PHA may absorb the family into its own program at any time provided it has the funding available to do so.  

  1. Issue a new voucher 

After receiving the form HUD-52665 and supporting documentation from the initial PHA, HUD expects the receiving PHA to process the family’s paperwork and issue the family a voucher within two weeks as long as all the information is in order, the family has contacted the receiving PHA, and the family complies with the receiving PHA’s procedures. 

Some receiving PHAs will also require the family to participate in a briefing about the receiving PHA’s policies and procedures.   

Family Responsibilities 

The family is then responsible for: 

  • Promptly contacting the receiving PHA and complying with the receiving PHA’s procedures for incoming families. 
  • Submitting a request for tenancy approval (RFTA) to the receiving PHA during the term of the receiving PHA’s voucher.  
  • Allow time for receiving PHA processes, such as:  
    • Appointments at the receiving PHA 
    • Rent approval  
    • Inspection of the unit by the receiving PHA 

The family should also plan for any extra expenses, including:  

  • Living expenses during the move 
  • Security deposit 
  • Moving costs 

NOTE: It is very important to make sure the family understands the process and time that may be required before they are able to secure a unit in the new jurisdiction. It is advised that the family doesn’t relocate to the new jurisdiction until they are notified that their voucher has been issued. They run the risk of being stuck without assisted housing for an extended period of time if there is any delay in processing their paperwork.