The Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) has been designed with the aim of offering support to eligible low-income households in covering their summer or winter energy expenses. LIHEAP provides a one-time financial benefit that is directly disbursed to the utility companies, helping to offset the costs associated with heating their residences.
The amount of assistance granted is contingent upon several factors, including income levels, the size of the household, the type of fuel used, and the geographic location of the residence. In the state of Illinois, Morgan, Cass and Scott counties residents could request the LIHEAP benefits, and this is how to do it.
How to apply for LIHEAP assistance if you live in these Illinois counties
Individuals seeking to apply for energy assistance under this program are required to present specific documentation, when they’re requested to attend to an appointment. To start, Social Security cards for all members residing in the household will be required. The official will ask proof of the total gross income for the entire household, sourced from all income channels, for the 30-day income period commencing on the date of application.
One of the most important prerequisites is to proof that you’re actually having skyrocketing energy bills, due to extreme weather like heatwaves or freezing-cold temperatures. That’s why you’ll have to attach the most recent energy or electricity bills.
Any household members aged 18 or above who claim zero income must provide recent evidence detailing how they are financially sustained. This may include proof of active job searches, documentation of denied or appealed disability claims, evidence of unemployment denials, written confirmation of assistance from a family member, records of applying for or receiving services from the Department of Human Services (DHS), proof of enrollment in educational institutions, and similar documentation.
In cases where utilities are encompassed within the rental agreement, applicants must also furnish a copy of this agreement, demonstrating that utilities are indeed included. Additionally, the rental agreement should specify the monthly rent amount and provide contact information for the landlord.
Two priority groups that could claim LIHEAP benefits in Illinois
Priority Group 1: This one includes households with a person who is 60 years or older, and/or has a disability. Seniors and disability households who are without energy service can also be served at this time.
Priority Group 2: This includes families with children (age 5 and under) and Priority Group 1.
Both groups can start their application process calling at 217-243-9404, or toll-free 1-888-288-4413.