In the scorching summers and bone-chilling winters, many Oklahomans struggle to afford the high costs of cooling and heating their homes. Thankfully, the Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) steps in as a vital support that might be the line between good health and risk for you and your family
If you or someone you know is facing financial hardship and requires assistance with energy bills, you could apply now for the LIHEAP program in Oklahoma. Let’s take a look at how the program works and how’s the application process. It’s easy, but you better know the exact steps to do it the right way.
The LIHEAP program in Oklahoma: The basic requirements to apply
To be eligible for LIHEAP in Oklahoma, you must meet the requirements that include (but might not be limited to) income, household size, and the energy costs you incur. While specific guidelines may vary slightly, the program typically considers households with incomes at or below 130% of the federal poverty level (FPL).
Regarding the FPL, to give you an example, for a household of 1 person, 130% of this indicator is $25,636, and for a family of 4 people it is $39,000. So, in those cases (as in all others) the annual gross income should be below those numbers. This applies in the 49 contiguous states, except in Alaska and Hawaii, since these two states have different living costs and FPLs. You could check the official FLP chart here.
If you or your household is currently participating in other public assistance programs, such as Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) or Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF), may automatically qualify you for LIHEAP.
Applying for LIHEAP in Oklahoma
The Oklahoma Department of Human Services (OKDHS) administers the LIHEAP program in the state, ensuring the funds reach those who need them the most. To start, you’ll need to provide the next documents:
- Proof of identity of the applicants: birth certificate, driver’s license, paycheck, voter registration card, school records, or US passport.
- Social Security numbers of the members of the household.
- Earned incomes: check stubs for the last 30 days that show your name or Social Security number, date of pay, and income before deductions. Could be helpful to provide the statement from your employer, or even a copy of the last year’s tax return, only if self-employed.
- Other incomes: provide copies current benefit checks or award letters; copies of child support or alimony checks, or from a court’s order showing benefits amount.
- The officer might ask you for some other documents, like those from medical expenses. This is only needed for household members who are 60 years of age or older or permanently disabled if you want to receive a medical deduction.
- Utility Notice (if you apply for Energy Crisis Assistance or Life Threatening Energy Assistance), with an active cut-off notice; a utility analysis for new account establishing; or a refusal notice to deliver additional fuel for non-payment.