The Law and Service Animals

Service Animals showing 6 dogs Labs, Shepard and Goldens who perform a service

Service animals are an essential feature of American society. They assist a great number of people with disabilities. However, as service animals become more and more prominent in the modern world, there is growing confusion that surrounds them. Questions regarding where service animals are permitted, what tasks they can perform, and what a service animal even is remain as common as ever before.

In accordance with the Americans with Disabilities Act, Service Dogs are allowed to accompany their handlers anywhere the individual with disabilities is allowed to enter. Service animals are defined as dogs that are individually trained to do work or to perform tasks for people with disabilities. As there is no central registry for service dogs, we understand that there are many attempts to pass off pet dogs as service animals.

In an effort to clear up any confusion as to what is and what is not acceptable, The Governor’s Commission on Disability has arranged a glossary of terms in order to clarify any confusion when considering a service animal.
Service Dog Brochure

Service animals are an essential feature of American society. They assist a great number of people with disabilities. However, as service animals become more and more prominent in the modern world, there is growing confusion that surrounds them. Questions regarding where service animals are permitted, what tasks they can perform, and what a service animal even is remain as common as ever before.

Definitions Relating to Service Animals 

Service Animal Frequently Asked Questions

No Pets Allowed Notice

Any information provided herein, including any attachments and all associated webpages, is non-binding and for informational purposes only. Nothing herein should be construed and/ or interpreted as a legal opinion, counsel or advice. Further, there is no expertise, advice, or recommendations of any kind presented herein. It is the responsibility of the recipient(s) to verify accuracy and compliance with all local, state, and federal laws, and it is recommended that the recipient seek the advice of an attorney, and/or any other professional within the discipline which is relevant to the subject matter.

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Governor's Commission on Disability  |  121 South Fruit Street, Suite 101, Concord, NH 03301
Toll-Free NH: 800-852-3405  |  603-271-2773  |   Fax: 603-271-2837  |  disability@gcd.nh.gov

WIC shopping made easy with new smartphone app

WIC has a new app that saves time and makes shopping easy! Just follow these steps;

  1. Install WICshopper from your app store.

  2. Select New Hampshire as your WIC Agency.

  3. Register using the 16-digit number on your WIC Card.

  4. Your available benefits will display each time you use the app.

  5. Scan product bar code while you shop to check eligibility!

  6. Select your favorite store and view WIC approved items available.

Learn more at EBTshopper.com

Atech Services announces closing ~ Services will continue through other providers

ATECH Services announced that they will be winding down operations this winter and officially closing on February 28, 2019. Assistive technology services provided by ATECH will transition to other providers in the Granite State on March 1, 2019.

Jon Eriquezzo, Director of ATECH Services said in a letter, “We are extraordinarily proud of the incredible work our staff has done these past 10 years and our decision to close has nothing to do with our efforts. Simply put, the reimbursement rates for ATECH were not nearly enough to sustain it. I can personally assure you that we worked tirelessly to find a way for ATECH to be sustainable, from developing new efficiencies to exploring potential mergers with tech companies. We’d also like to thank officials from the Department of Health and Human Services for working closely with us during this process.”

Eriquezzo assures clients that because the state is mandated to provide these services, they will not be going away.

“Over the course of this process, ATECH will work with clients, DHHS state, and the State’s two Medicaid Managed Care Organizations (MCOs), New Hampshire Healthy Families and Well Sense Health Plan, to ensure this transition is as successful as possible. I can assure you that his is our primary goal these next few months”, said Eriquezzo.

Clients who are scheduled to receive initial assistive technology assessments from ATECH will be contacted by the Department or their respective MCO to proactively make arrangements for any necessary consultations in advance of the scheduled transition on March 1, 2019.

for more information, please call one of the numbers below depending on your insurance carrier:

  • New Hampshire Healthy Families - 603-263-7232

  • Well Sense- 877-957-1300

  • NH Medicaid (and other insurance) - 603-271-9384

the Refurbished Equipment marketplace (shoprem.com) will continue to operate, providing low-cost, high-quality refurbished medical equipment and assistive technology. No other Crotched Mountain services (e.g., Ready Set Connect) are affected by the transition. ATECH customers are encouraged to call 603-226-2900 with any questions.

New Hampshire Family Voices

New Hampshire Family Voices

NH Family Voices is dedicated in its efforts to address the informational and support needs of parents and professionals seeking services for children with special challenges and needs. As parents, our staff have also traveled through the maze of services and programs designed to help our kids, so we understand the issues that families face. Maneuvering Through the Maze was originally produced in 1991. The impetus for the guide was the 1989 passage of New Hampshire’s Family Support legislation (SB 199-FN-A) and the need for families to receive assistance with the coordination of community resources.

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Which to choose

Most individuals new to living with a disability have a span of time after their injury before they can get back to work. It may be a short span or a lengthy one. It can be a truly difficult and challenging time, or it can be a time of growth and exploration for whatever possibilities may exist.

Disability is a subject you may read about in the newspaper, but not think of it as something that might actually happen to you. Studies show that just over 1 in 4 of today’s 20 year-olds will become disabled in some way before reaching age 67.

If disability happens, there is one important question: how to pay the bills as you are recovering? Hopefully there is disability insurance to assist through the financial difficulties; but if not, there is access to Social Security.

There are two different types of Social Security that you will hear mentioned: Supplemental Security Income (SSI) or Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI).

Supplemental Security Income (SSI) is a Federal income supplement program funded by general tax revenues (not Social Security taxes) that:

·        Is designed to help aged, blind, and disabled people, who have little or no income; and

·        Provides cash to meet basic needs for food, clothing, and shelter.

Any person struggling with disabilities after a brain injury is eligible for SSI.

Conversely, Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) is more restricted. The Social Security disability insurance program pays benefits to you and certain family members if you worked long enough and paid Social Security taxes.  (Your adult child also may qualify for benefits on your earnings record if he or she has a disability that started before age 22.)

In both situations, the Social Security Administration will review and must agree that you have a disability. You may apply online or in person for Social Security. Go to https://www.ssa.gov/ for complete information.  

Back to work After Injury: There are many resources in New Hampshire, both online and in person. First of all, talk to your rehabilitation counselors and staff. The social workers, case managers and neuro-resource facilitators can be tremendously helpful in directing and guiding you or your family member. You may wish to meet with your local office of the New Hampshire Vocational Rehabilitation whose mission is to assist eligible New Hampshire citizens with disabilities to secure suitable employment and financial and personal independence by providing rehabilitation services.

Other Options:  The Ticket to Work (Ticket) program, which is a free and voluntary program that can help Social Security beneficiaries go to work, get a good job that may lead to a career, and become financially independent all while they keep their Medicare or Medicaid. Individuals who receive Social Security benefits because of a disability and are age 18 through 64 probably already qualify for the program.

For details – https://www.ssa.gov/work/

PASS Plans — Working While Disabled - A Guide To Plans For Achieving Self-Support from the Social Security Administration. This page provides an overview of what PASS plans are and how they may be helpful when returning to work.

For more details – https://www.ssa.gov/disabilityresearch/wi/pass.htm