To access the following information on how to file an application for cash assistance, food stamps and medical assistanace benefits.
The Department of Public Welfare is dedicated to helping low-income families and individuals living in Pennsylvania move to independence through the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program, which is also referred to as Cash Assistance. TANF provides money for dependent children and their parents or other relatives with whom they live, and for pregnant women.
How to Apply:
You can apply for and renew your benefits from the comfort of your home using COMPASS, the online resource for cash assistance, Food Stamps, help with child care, health care coverage, home heating assistance (LIHEAP), school meals, SelectPlan for Women and long-term living services. You can also:
* File an application at your local County Assistance Office
* Download an application form from the Web and return it to your local County Assistance Office:
Application for Cash Assistance, Food Stamps and Medical Assistance Benefits (English version)
Solicitud para recibir beneficios (version espanola)
If you need help completing the application form or need more information about benefits, trained County Assistance Office staff can help you.
Are You Eligible?
To be eligible for Cash Assistance/TANF, certain requirements must be met. County Assistance Office staff can provide more information on all of these requirements:
* You must be a United States citizen and a resident of Pennsylvania. (Certain non-citizens lawfully admitted for permanent residence may also be eligible.)
* You and your family members must provide Social Security Numbers or apply for one.
* You are required to seek employment or participate in an employment and training program. (Some persons may be exempt from employment requirements because of personal circumstances; for example, a temporary or permanent disability.)
* You are required to agree to, sign and follow through on an Agreement of Mutual Responsibility, which is a plan for what you will do to find permanent employment.
* If you are seeking Cash Assistance for a dependent child, you must agree to cooperate with paternity and child support requirements, unless there is good cause for not seeking support. Your child must be under age 18 or age 18 and a full-time student, living with and cared for by you and in need of support or care because of the:
o Death of a parent;
o Incapacity of a parent;
o Continued absence of a parent; or
o Unemployment of one or both parents.
* Your resources (things with cash value such as bank accounts, bonds or property that is not your primary residence) must have a value of $1,000 or less.
* You must report all income from employment or from other sources including, but not limited to, child support, unemployment compensation, interest, Social Security benefits, or lottery winnings.
How Long Can I Receive Cash Assistance?
You can receive Cash Assistance for 60 months TOTAL (five years) over the course of your lifetime.
Frequently Asked Questions about Cash Assistance