How to Request an Exception to HUD Live in Aide Policies

Art: Robin Mead

If a rule or policy is creating a problem with being able to get the care you need, you have the right to request an exception to the rule.

You ALWAYS have the right to request an exception to ANY local housing program policy. Don’t listen to any housing worker who tells you that you can’t request this. You can ALWAYS request.

That does not mean the housing program has to grant your request. However, if the request is properly documented, they must consider it and must have a valid reason to approve or deny.

How to Make the Request

A request for an exception to live in aide policies would be made in the same way as any other accommodation request: How to Request Disability Accommodations in HUD Housing

It would be helpful to include a quote or copy of the HUD policy on this (see bottom of this page)

It is probably better if you don’t mix this request in with other requests. A request for an exception to a live in aide policy would be a separate request made on a separate form with a separate providers letters attached.

 A request for a LOCAL policy created by your Housing Authority is something they would have the power to approve.

A request for a FEDERAL policy would have to be approved at a higher level. We have not met anyone who has attempted this.

Example of Request for Exception to Live in Aide Policies

Jane’s housing authority has a local rule that an aide will only be approved if the person needs care 12+ hours per day. There is no federal rule that states this.

Jane’s doctor writes that she needs care 6 hours a day. Jane submits a request for a live in aide, but this request is denied.

Jane can submit an additional reasonable accommodation request asking for an exception to the 12 hour rule. Jane and her doctor would explain why an exception is needed. For example: If Jane needs assistance for ten minutes once every hour, even though the total time does not add up to 12 hours, she might still require a live in aide because of the frequency of care.

In a case like Jane’s, her request for a policy exception might be granted. If it was not granted, Jane would have a very valid reason to file a Fair Housing complaint, and request an investigation and review of the decision. There are no federal rules or laws that state an aide must be needed 12 hours per day, and a housing program that denies for this reason could be seen as discrimination.


From the HUD Housing Voucher Guidebook:

A family may always request a reasonable accommodation to program rules, policies, practices, or services, including to the live-in aide policy, to permit program participation by individuals with disabilities. A family’s composition or circumstances may warrant the provision of an additional bedroom to permit disability-related overnight care and allow the family equal use and enjoyment of the unit. Such limited exceptions to the established subsidy standards are permitted under 24 CFR § 982.402(b)(8). The PHA must consider requests for an exception to the established subsidy standards on a case-by-case basis and provide an exception, where necessary, as a reasonable accommodation. A reasonable accommodation request may only be denied if it would impose an undue financial and administrative burden on the housing provider or fundamentally alter the nature of the provider’s operations. The PHA shall document the justification for all granted exceptions.

Learn More

🌸 This page is part of the online guide: Epic Master List of Disability Accommodation Letters

🌸 Facebook Group: HUD and Section 8 Disabled Residents & Family Members

🌸 Art on this page by Robin Mead and Elizabeth D’Angelo.

Updated February 2020. Please comment below with stories, ideas, questions or suggestions. Please let us know if any links on this page stop working. If you found this page helpful, please share it with others by pressing one of these magic little buttons:



4 thoughts on “How to Request an Exception to HUD Live in Aide Policies”

  1. Hi,

    My grandmother diagnose with Parkinson disease, dementia, and much more disease. The doctor sent over the reasonable accommodation that approve her for live in aid. My girlfriend is the live in aid provider to my grandmother from IHSS for almost 1 years. Now we want to add her as live in aid. The housing specialist stating that she cannot add as live in aid because she is the mother of my 3 kids. I am also disable and I cannot take care my children and grandmother. They consistent stating she does not qualify as live in aid due to she is associated to my kids as the mother. Is there something I can do to get this approve. It doesn’t make any sense at all. The housing authority also send me a 24 CFR Section 5.403 and highlight the area stating” (3) would not be living in the unit except provide necessary supportive services. She is providing care for grandmother. Can you please advise. Thank you.


    1. I’m sorry for the slow reply. I hope you were able to get this sorted out. HUD has a rule that I live in aid must certify that’s the only reason they are in the house is to provide caregiving. If her children live in the house, it would be hard for her to make that claim. I am not sure I am correctly understanding the situation. You could certainly appeal, but it is complicated and I don’t know if it would get approved. You might also try contacting disability rights California to see if they have any ideas.


  2. My friend recently became permanently disabled and his diagnosis is terminal. The doctors gave him a few months to live. He lives in a low income apt, where this rent is 0$. I care for him round the clock pretty much, and have talked to the landlords about doing a reasonable accommodation request to be his live in aide, but the landlord said it might not get approved because of my criminal record. Can I( or he) use the reasonable accommodation request procedure in addition to the original request, to request an exception to live in aide rules asking them to overlook my criminal record, due to the fact it was related to my past as a victim of domestic violence and I also have a physical and mental disability, and if so, what documentation would work? My criminal record is a misdemeanor possession charge from 2014 and a violent felony of accessory after the fact to assault w a deadly weapon, GBI, because I gave somebody a ride after they assaulted someone with a fiream , but I didn’t know it was her that assaulted the person when I gave her the ride. Please any advice or help u have will be much appreciated.
    Thanks for your help with this,


    1. Hi dena,

      Yes, you could try to get an accommodation for this… based on domestic violence laws and your friends situation and if you are the best or only aide possible.

      But it could take a long time to get all the documentation for this and your friend only has a few months to live.

      Another option is to request an exception to guest policy. They do not check criminal background on guests.

      If your friends doctor writes that it is medically necessary for someone to be staying there for up to x months and that end of life is expected soon, then your friend can request an exception to guest policy.

      This page has a section on exceptions to guest policy, plus one on exception to criminal background.

      If your friend passes, unfortunately, you won’t be able to keep the place.

      If you want to keep the place, then forget about guest or aide. Your friend can request accommodations to try to add you as a family member – not guaranteed to work, but you can try 😊


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