Legal Requirements for Starting a Halfway House in Pennsylvania

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Every state across these United States has halfway homes. These homes serve their community with an invaluable service. Halfway homes should be in the business of giving second chances to individuals recently discharged from their incarceration.

While some halfway houses are not quality or managed with the primary reason of helping individuals transition back into society, there are other top-notch halfway homes making their clients the number one priority.

These individuals who were once incarcerated for months and many times years need to baby-step back into society, which should be the purpose of any halfway home and be a part of the client’s rehabilitation process.

Most states follow a standard for running a halfway house to make it possible for a recovering drug user or alcoholic to continue to be monitored and receive addiction treatment, educational and social instructions, and mental health counseling.

When the client is confident and ready for discharge, they reenter society safely, sober, and find work to become self-supporting and independent.

These rules and regulations work together to benefit the clients they serve. At the risk of being incarcerated again, the client abides by the rules of the house.

While some of these rules and regulations may vary from state to state, they are standard for homes in any state.

House owners and managers may operate their halfway house differently, yet the premise is to help the client become independent and self-supporting.

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Most halfway homes operate as a nonprofit organization, or some private concerns operate a group of these homes.

Some private contractors manage these select homes with the Bureau of Prisons. The following are some standardized rules and regulations for most homes across America, including those in Pennsylvania.

However, each home sets its own rules, regulations, and routines, which seem to be standard for all homes.

⦿ The home works with state agencies.

⦿ Halfway houses have a structured environment.

⦿ Strict house rules benefit the client.

⦿ Halfway homes admit clients to their house based on the nature of their crime.

⦿ Across America, halfway homes do not admit clients who have unresolved and pending charges.

⦿ Halfway homes do not admit clients who require strict monitoring within a medical or psychiatric facility as an in-patient.

⦿ Clients do not get to stay free in any halfway house. Clients must pay 25 percent of their gross income. This fee helps keep the house running. 

⦿ Each client must have individualized healthcare insurance to cover impending medical expenses. If the client has no insurance, they must apply for Medicaid and Federal Financial Participation.

⦿ If the client comes from a jail or prison facility, the Corrections Manager determines the halfway house where the inmate goes. Corrections attempt to use a halfway house close to the inmate’s home. Finding the perfect home is not always possible.

⦿ Going to a halfway house can be rejected by the inmate, or the inmate can refuse to go to the halfway house chosen. The inmate can ask for another choice. 

⦿ If any client refuses to abide by the house’s rules and regulations, correction can remove them and send them back to jail or prison. 

⦿ Homes set no time limit on how long a client can stay in a specific halfway house.

⦿ Visitation rules may vary related to weekdays, weekends, and holidays. Some homes can set a rule saying no visitors.

⦿ Homes may say what visitors can or cannot bring into the house. Some say the opposite sex cannot visit.

⦿ Homes do not allow weapons, alcohol, and some do not allow cigarettes or smoking in or outside on the property.

⦿ Homes differ on what clients can bring with them, such as phones, iPads, laptops, or PCs. Standard belongings allowed include clothing,

⦿ Documents such as any IDs, health insurance information, personal hygiene items, prescription medications, and a list of prescribed drugs the client takes are allowed.

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Rules and Regulations Surrounding Starting a Halfway House

Currently, in 2021 a new licensure program for drug and alcohol recovery houses is being worked on by the Pennsylvania Department of Drug and Alcohol Programs.

Once this new program is in place, recovery homes must obtain a license if they want to receive federal or state funding or if the house wants to receive referrals for state-funded facilities or state agencies.

⦿ Halfway houses must comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act.

⦿ It is Pennsylvania law to outline the policies contained in the new regulations such as, 

⦿ Halfway homes must inform clients about their house rules and regulations.

⦿ House must manage client funds.

⦿ All employees at a halfway house must have criminal background checks.

⦿ The House manager cannot accept anything from a client in exchange for services rendered.

⦿ Homes must ensure the safety of the client.

⦿ Treatment and recovery supports are mandatory.

⦿ No client may harbor illegal drugs or alcohol.

⦿ Clients must participate in maintaining the property.

⦿ Managers must address and document complaints.

⦿ Each client must have an emergency contact, and managers must notify these client contacts in an emergency.

⦿ First-time halfway house owners must connect with the local Single County Authority who administers alcohol and drug activities in the home’s area. 

Get Help to Start Your Halfway House Today

You have thought about opening and managing a halfway house in Pennsylvania and need help.

You want to diversify your investment, possibly through mutual funds, stocks, and bonds. Residential or commercial real estate is another way for you to make a passive income.

You have a property and a large home and want to open a halfway house in Pennsylvania for recovering individuals who were given a second chance for a successful life.

Halfway houses are in demand and sorely needed to help serve those with second chances.

You also understand that opening property and home to any well-deserving groups of people provides a passive income for you.

All you need to do is decide which group of individuals you most want to help, such as those listed below. Access our ebook for more in-depth information.

We are seasoned and experienced in opening halfway houses across the United States. We stand ready to give you the help you need and watch your success grow.

⦿ Homeless Veterans

⦿ Recovering addicts

⦿ Recovering drug users

⦿ Troubled teens

⦿ Young single mothers

⦿ Abused women

⦿ Homeless populace

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