Requirements to Receive Welfare in Nebraska

Nebraska's welfare plan is called the Aid to Dependent Children (ADC). Part of the federally funded Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF), Nebraska ADC provides cash aid to qualifying low-income families. Cash aid is limited to 60 months of lifetime assistance for work-eligible individuals. In addition to cash aid, welfare recipients may qualify for medical and food assistance.

General Eligibility

ADC is open to Nebraska families with children up to age 18 and pregnant women who expect to give birth within 90 days. Children up to age 19 may qualify if they are attending school full time. Applicants must be United States citizens or documented aliens. You are required to supply a Social Security number for all family members requesting aid. If you do not have a Social Security number, the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services will help you apply for one. An interview is required as part of the application process, and proof of identity, income and residency must be supplied.

Income Limits

Income limits and benefits are based on the Nebraska standard of need. As of 2009, the standard of need for a family of three is $710 a month. Benefit calculations exclude or deduct a portion of your income and expenses before eligibility is determined. You may deduct 20 percent of your earned income and exclude the tax-related Earned Income Credit. A portion of childcare expenses are also disregarded before your income is calculated. The value of your countable assets must not exceed $4,000 for an individual or $6,000 for couples.

Work Requirements

Work-eligible welfare recipients may need to enroll in the Employment First program and participate in work-related activities. Approved work-related activities might include active employment, job training and seeking employment. Single-parent households require 30 hours of weekly work-related activities. Families with two eligible parents must participate in 35 to 55 hours of activity.

Member Responsibilities

Welfare applicants may be required to cooperate with child support enforcement agencies and assign support rights to the state. Additionally, cash aid recipients must report increased income, employment changes, relocation or changes to the household size within 10 days. Failure to cooperate with or report changes to your social worker of the Department of Health and Human Services may result in reduction or refusal of benefits.

Other Benefits

Most Nebraska welfare recipients qualify for food stamp assistance under the federal Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP). All ADC recipients qualify for Medicaid health care coverage and childcare assistance.

references