Temporary Assistance for Needy Families, usually referred to as TANF benefits, provides temporary cash for families in need, and this important assistance is also available in Washington State. To qualify, the household must meet what the state defines as a “need situation.” This means they must have low income and face economic hardships.
The family must have at least one adult parent or caregiver responsible for a child. In some cases, pregnant women in their third trimester can also be included in the TANF acceptance criteria. Applicants and their eligible children must meet one of the following requirements: be a citizen, non-citizen national or eligible resident who has lived in the United States for at least five years, unless they are refugees or another exempt category of person from the 5-year limit.
TANF program in Washington: How much could you claim and other benefits
Eligible families receive cash assistance to cover expenses such as food, clothing, housing, utilities, transportation, phone bills, and other essential items. The amount of money varies depending on the state and each family’s situation. Also, TANF can help cover the costs of childcare so that parents or caregivers can work, seek employment, or participate in job training programs.
In the employment field as well, the program offers access to training programs and related services, in order to help beneficiaries acquire the necessary skills to secure employment and advance in their careers. Furthermore, the program has a job search services platform with career counseling and assistance with resume preparation, interviews, and job search skills.
The amount of TANF benefits you can receive is based on your family size and their total income. As an example, a family of three with no income would receive a monthly TANF grant of $654 a month but, if a household member get engaged in a new gainful activity (a job), only half of the earnings are counted against the grant. If a member of the household starts receiving unemployment or another type of unearned income, the entire amount is counted against the grant.
How to apply for TANF in Washington
To apply for the TANF program, you can do so through its online platform, by clicking here. There you will be able to review all the requirements and attach all the documents they request. If you prefer, you can also do it by phone at 877-501-2233.
Finally, if you require person-to-person help, you can visit your local Community Services Office. Take a look at the full lists of centers here.