Temporary Assistance to Needy Families Application Information (TANF Info)
What is TANF?
Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF) is financial assistance, or cash assistance allocated to low income families with children, and all states operate a TANF program.
Back in the day, TANF used to be referred to as AFDC or ADC which stood for Aid to Families with Dependent Children.
This is the program that most people refer to when the speak about "welfare," and speak negatively about the term "welfare moms."
If you need financial assistance to help your family to make it through tough times, my advice to you is to forget about all the people who speak negatively about the program.
First of all , so called "welfare moms" do not and cannot exist anymore (not for long anyway), and the program has instituted some positive changes to try to put an end to chronic welfare dependence.
Changes in the Program
In 1996, President Clinton instituted Welfare Reform. The official title of the program is the Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Act of 1996.
Under the program AFDC or ADC was replaced by TANF, and the new program demanded the following changes:
- Ending welfare as an entitlement program, as it had been before;
- Requiring recipients to begin working after two years of receiving benefits;
- Placing a lifetime limit of five years on benefits paid by federal funds;
- Aiming to encourage two-parent families and discouraging out-of-wedlock births.
- Enhancing enforcement of child support.
Although the program is applauded by some people as an absolute success; others, like me, believe that there are huge cracks in the system where many people fall through.
First of all, in most cases, the requirement to work can be satisfied by the recipient obtaining low wage employment. What is the purpose of kicking people off of the system, only to be thrown into more low-income living. How is this a success?
Homeless families are now a large sector of the homeless population - the loss of TANF benefits is one of the largest catalysts of this issue.
Secondly, the enforcement of child support was a good concept, but the states usually do not go far enough to encourage child support payments. A suspended driver's license is usually not enough to scare some absent parent's into making payments - tougher consequences should be instituted.
Lifetime limits do well to stimulate recipients' desire to obtain a higher standard of living through education and job training.
Self Sufficiency programs provide outstanding opportunities for motivated recipients to pursue a higher standard of living.
Self sufficiency programs are programs that help a TANF recipient to move toward financial stability. Some of these programs include:
*Transportation Assistance (for work or job training)
*Employment Training Programs
*Job Finding Assistance
If you believe you are eligible for TANF, and you are motivated to improve your financial situation, you should stress to your caseworker that you are extremely interested in these programs.
TANF Eligibility and TANF Applications
As I mentioned above, each state operates its own cash assistance program, and the rules and regulations vary a little for each. However, most of the basic guidelines and regulations never change:
- You must be a citizen of the United States.
- Children must be either citizens or have eligible alien status.
- You will need a valid social security card.
- You must fall within certain low income guidelines
- Your must have at least 1 child 18 years old or younger.
State TANF Applications and Online Application Links
- Alabama Department of Human Resources - FA Eligibilty Requirements
Alabama FA (Family Assistance Program
- State of Alaska | Alaska Temporary Assistance
Alaska ATAP (Alaska Temporary Assistance Program)
- Arizona TANF
Arizona EMPOWER / AZ Cash Assistance
- Arkansas Department of Workforce Services
- CalWORKs Home
- CDHS-ColoradoWorks: Welcome to the Colorado Works Website!
- Connecticut TANF
Regional Office Information Abstract: For information on accessing Department of Social Services programs in your area, please follow the links below to your regional office. ***************************NORTHERN REGION Serving the towns of: Andover, A
- District of Columbia
Income Maintenance Administration Application for Benefits Abstract: Income Maintenance Administration Application for Benefits With the Combined Application for Benefits, you can apply or be recertified for one or more of the following assistance pr
- Delaware - A Better Chance (ABC)
Temporary Assistance for Needy Families is Delaware's main cash assistance program
- Florida Access (Apply Online for FL TANF)
- Georgia Compass - Apply for GA TANF Online
- Hawaii (Hawaii Real Choices - Apply Online)
- Idaho TANF Apply Online for Assistance
Idaho Department of Health and Welfare
- Illinois Workfirst
- Indiana FSSA: Temporary Assistance for Needy Families
- Iowa Department of Human Services - Iowa Family Investment Program (Iowa FIP)
DHS,Iowa Department of Human Services
- Kansas SRS Online Application
- Kentucky Transitional Assistance Program (K-TAP)
- Louisiana Family Independence Temporary Assistance (FITAP)
Louisiana Family Independence Temporary Assistance Program (LA FITAP)
- Maine Public Assistance Applications
- Maryland Department of Human Resources
- Maryland FIP
- Massachusetts Cash Assistance
See whether you are eligible for state or federal cash assistance, and learn how to apply to cash assistance programs.
- Michigan DHS - Cash Assistance
- Minnesota Family Investment Program (MFIP) Brochures & Fact Sheets
- Mississippi Department of Human Services
- Missouri FSD - Temporary Assistance
- Montana FAIM
- Nebraska DHHS: Financial Services
- New Hampshire
The Temporary Assistance for Needy Families Program (TANF) provides cash assistance to families with dependent children through either the Family Assistance Program (FAP) or the New Hampshire Employment Program (NHEP).
- New Jersey WorkFirst NJ (NJ\'s Temporary Assistance for Needy Families - TANF)
- New Mexico Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF)
New Mexico State Government Human Services Department Web Resources
- New York Temporary Assistance | OTDA
Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance supervises support programs for families and individuals
- North Carolina DSS: Work First Family Assistance
- North Dakota TANF and Job Opportunities and Basic Skills (JOBS)
This is the home page for the North Dakota Department of Human Services Temporary Assistance For Needy Families (TANF) / Job Opportunities and Basic Skills (JOBS) programs
- Ohio TANF/Worksfirst (Online Benefit Application)_
- Oklahoma OKDHS - Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF)
Get information about the Oklahoma Department of Human Services (OKDHS) Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) Program, which program offers time-limited cash assistance, or temporary support in meeting basic needs, training leading to employ
- Oregon Temporary assistance to needy families
Assistance-food, cash, housing
- Pennsylvania TANF and Moving to Independence
- Puerto Rico (in Spanish/Ability to Translate to English)
- RI Department of Human Services
Family Independence Program
- South Carolina DSS: Family Independence (FI)
- South Dakota DSS: Family Independence (FI)
- Tennessee Department of Human Services
Tennessee Department of Human Services
- Welcome to Your Texas Benefits
- U.S. Virgin Islands DHS: Financial Programs TANF
- Utah Workforce Services (Apply Online)
Utah Workforce Services (Apply Online)
- Reach Up in Vermont (TANF) | Department for Children and Families
- DSHS - TANF and Support Services
Department of Social and Health Services (DSHS), Washington State. Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) provides temporary cash and medical help for families in need. Who is eligible? What are the income and resource Requirements?
- West Virginia Works (WV inROADS - Apply Online)
West Virginia inROADS - online application for Children and Pregnant Women Medicaid, West Virginia Children's Health Insurance Program (WVCHIP), Food Stamps, Medicare Premium Assistance, School Clothing Allowance (SCA) and Low Income Energy Assistanc
- Wisconsin Works (W-2) Homepage
- Wyoming Department of Family Services - TANF (Temporary Assistance for Needy Families)
Helps needy families achieve self-sufficiency.