Last Updated on July 3, 2023 by Lori Pace
In times of financial crisis, the TANF can be a lifesaver, especially for single mothers. However, this program’s provisions and eligibility requirements may differ from one state to another. So, particularly in Arizona, here are some things you need to know before applying for TANF.
What is Cash Assistance Program?
The Cash Assitance Program aims to grant provisional monetary assistance to underprivileged Arizonan children and their families. In addition, it also offers supportive services to help ease the family’s burden further. These services cover food, shelter, health care, education, and other basic needs.
Who are eligible to apply for Cash Assistance Program?
You must meet the following requirements to become eligible to apply for the program:
- Be a U.S. citizen or a qualified alien status
- A resident of Arizona
- Must be pregnant or living with a minor child
- Unwed minor parent (less than 18 years of age)
- Unemployed or underemployed
- Countable income below the current Federal Poverty Level (FPL)
Other non-financial eligibility requirements:
- Proof of identity
- Provide Social Security Number
- Negative drug test result
- Not a convicted felon (related to controlled substance offenses)
- Must be willing to undergo a mandatory fraud investigation
How much money will you receive from the TANF CA?
The amount of cash benefit will depend on your family size. At the same time, your current income will also play a varying factor.
A family of two in Arizona may receive up to $220 monthly cash assistance. Meanwhile, a bigger family of 12 can get as much as $791 per month.
How to apply for TANF Cash Assistance in Arizona?
You need to fill up a DES-approved application in person at any of your local Family Assistance Administration (FAA) offices. Alternatively, you can file your application via mail, online, telephone, or fax.
After application submission, most applicants will undergo a brief interview to assess eligibility. This process can take place over the telephone.
The DES will verify your eligibility to avail of the TANF cash assistance. Sometimes, they may send you a written request to submit additional verification information. If so, comply promptly to avoid further delays in the approval process.
How long is the turnaround time for TANF CA approval?
The processing usually takes up to 45 calendar days from the application filing date. Not unless there are untoward setbacks that will require additional verification information.
What to expect upon approval of TANF Cash Assistance?
Once proven eligible, you will receive a QUEST Electronic Benefits Transfer or EBT card. This card is much like your typical debit card. It is where the government assistance funds, like TANF CA, are deposited. You can withdraw the money to an ATM or directly use it at EBT-accepted facilities or merchants.
How long can you avail of the TANF in Arizona?
Ideally, the TANF CA benefit is only limited to no more than 12 countable months during a lifetime. However, there are exceptional cases wherein the state gives an additional 12 months of consideration. That said, needy families that are going through immense hardships can re-apply for the program provided that the following conditions are met:
- At least one adult will participate in the TANF Jobs Program.
- The TANF Jobs Program participating adult must complete and remain compliant within the 12 months cash assistance period.
- All children in the family (as required by Arizona law) must attend school and maintain an attendance record of at least 90%.
Bottom Line: Arizona TANF
The Temporary Assistance for Needy Families or Arizona TANF program is an excellent government initiative to aid struggling families. As a single parent, knowing that the state of Arizona provides a well-structured program and support service is a big relief. The benefits may be limited, but they are still enormously significant to help you get back on your feet.