The turnaround time for cash assistance depends on the facts of your case and the time it take program staff to verify your income. One state welfare program provides approved cash assistance within 45 days from the date an application is received. Contact program staff for more information about local processing times.
Cash assistance offers temporary relief from financial hardship. Depending on the program, cash assistance may cover basic needs, such as food, shelter and housing, as well as emergency medical treatment for those who qualify. Most programs are set up to provide immediate help if an individual or family has little or no cash and needs emergency housing, food, utilities, clothing or medical care. Government programs typically distribute cash assistance using the Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) system. The system allows state governments to release cash assistance via a plastic debit card.
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Proof of Eligibility
To apply for cash assistance through a welfare program, you must meet minimum eligibility requirements, which vary widely from program to program. On average, you must have low or very low income, be underemployed or unemployed, and be pregnant or responsible for a child below 19 years of age, according the Family Financial Help website.
To receive cash assistance, you must establish proof of eligibility, prepare an application and complete a phone, in-person or in-home interview. Not all interviews are subject to advance notice. To establish eligibility, provide proof of income and property, citizenship status, age, Social Security number, residence, shelter costs, work or school status and other required information.
State governments check your facts against tax, welfare, employment, Social Security and other records. If additional fact-checking is necessary, program staff may contact employers, banks and members of your family. Delay or loss of cash assistance may occur if program staff cannot verify the facts you've provided.