MONEY MANAGEMENT PROGRAM - An Overview

The Ravalli County Council on Aging (COA) Money Management Program (MMP) is designed to aid seniors and at-risk adults who are having difficulty managing their personal financial affairs. The purpose of MMP is to ensure that all bills are paid and critical service needs, including health care and prescription drug plans, are met. The consequences of undeposited income checks or unpaid bills can lead to discontinued utility services, late fees, evictions, and foreclosures, to name a few. These adults are often vulnerable to financial exploitation and elder abuse.

The objectives of MMP are to serve financially at-risk adults, to provide an advocate to prevent exploitation or abuse of clients, and to enhance their quality of life. This will be a fee-based program, with a sliding scale according to income. The caller informs the persons called of the monetary award, and also provides their true name, address, SSN, and bank routing number. The caller then asks for the bank account number into which the money will purportedly be deposited.

Services provided include:
  • Bill Payer - Oversees clients' bill paying activity. Clients make decisions about their finances, retain check-signing authority, and keep their own bank accounts. Bill payers may also balance checkbooks, maintain financial records, and prepare financial budgets.
  • Paying Agent - Legally acts on behalf of clients. The agent receives clients' funds and pays monthly bills directly.
  • Representative Payee - Appointed by the SSA to manage clients' Social Security or SSI benefits only.
  • Debt Management - Assists clients in eliminating or managing debt.
  • Entitlement Application - Information and assistance about any governmental program seniors may need.
  • Reverse Annuity Mortgage - Application assistance.
Getting started
Upon referral, to the COA MMP program, staff will set up a time for an interview. The interview will be conducted by COA staff and the referral source or an advocate/social worker. Information on the Referral form will be reviewed and the Intake form will be filled out. The client is given an overview of the services provided and fee schedule. An assessment is made to determine if the client understands the MMP process, is capable of understanding the contract for services, and is able to follow through on the commitment he/she is making. Preliminary financial questions will be asked and discussed. If it is clear the client is ready and interested in moving forward, a Contract for Services will be signed. The Financial Intake Form will be filled out at that time or during the next appointment. Then bill-paying services will begin.

For more information contact Alice Mariana, Program Director, at 406-363-5690.

Downloadable Client Referral Form