The Healey administration will soon begin issuing notices to some of the 4,000 families who have been in the emergency shelter system for more than nine months, asking them to leave.

Despite Massachusetts law saying that shelter stays would be capped at nine months starting June 1, officials say that the date for providing an exit notice has shifted to sometime in July. They will begin with alerting 150 families that they are required to move out of the shelter system by Sept. 29. Officials said they will continue notifying about 150 families per month as they roll out the new policy, but they plan to increase that number over time.

“This policy is a responsible measure to address the capacity and fiscal constraints of our state’s emergency assistance system,” said Gov. Maura Healey. “As Congress has repeatedly failed to act on this federal problem, Massachusetts has been going above and beyond, helping thousands of immigrants get work authorizations, jobs and ESOL classes.”

The state’s emergency shelter system is for families with children or pregnant women experiencing homelessness. It is unclear what percentage of the over 4,000 families who have spent nine months in the state’s emergency shelters are new arrivals, but the state has said that half of the overall 7,500 families currently in the system are migrants.

Families who receive notice to vacate will be able to apply for up to two 90-day extensions, or a hardship waiver of 120 days.

The 90-day extensions will be based off of health and safety criteria and employment circumstances. Part of that determination will also include a 60-day housing assessment, and families must be in compliance to receive an extension.

Extension criteria include employment, training program participation, veteran status, disability status, school enrollment, imminent risk of harm due to domestic violence, imminent placement in housing and additional criteria outlined in a new state guidance.

Families can appeal their extension decision.

It is unclear how many families will be ineligible for extension and be out of shelter on Sept. 29. If they are removed from the state’s emergency shelter system, they can immediately reapply, but will be subject to eligibility and waitlist rules.

There will be online resources to families about the policy change, through phone with a multilingual call center, and directly in the shelters, case managers will be trained to support families’ questions. There will be multilingual flyers.

The shelter stay cap was passed by the Legislature and signed by the governor in late April. Healey said that as a result of strengthened workforce development and rehousing programs, there’s been a steady increase of families leaving the shelter system.

Almost 1,700 families have left the emergency shelter system since Nov. 1, 2023, including 331 just in May, according to the state. However, the system still remains at its 7,500 family capacity, with over 800 on the waitlist.

”This new length of stay policy will strengthen those efforts to connect families with the resources and services they need to move into more stable housing and contribute to our workforce,” Healey said.

There have been 1,114 job placements and 3,716 work authorizations filed for migrants. Over a thousand people are enrolled for English as a second language classes

The rule will not impact individuals staying at the former Chelsea’s Soldiers home, Lexington Armory or Cambridge registry house of deeds, or the overflow sites.