While we are not affiliated with the government in any way, our private company engaged writers to research the LIHEAP program and compiled a guide and the following answers to frequently asked questions. Our goal is to help you get the benefits that you need by providing useful information on the process.
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The Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) provides assistance for energy costs to low-income households. LIHEAP is a federal program that is administered by individual states, territories, and tribes. In The District of Columbia, LIHEAP is administered by the Department of Energy and Environment.
Learn more about LIHEAP by reviewing the federal program fact sheet here.
For more information about LIHEAP in The District of Columbia, click here.
The Department of Energy and Environment oversees LIHEAP benefits and provides financial assistance for heating and cooling expenses to qualified households. Financial assistance can include payment for:
For more information about LIHEAP’s heating assistance initiative in The District of Columbia, see the District of Columbia state LIHEAP Detailed Model Plan here.
LIHEAP Crisis Assistance, like standard LIHEAP benefits, is a cash grant provided to the utility companies of eligible individuals in certain situations.
If your household meets all the eligibility requirements above and has an energy-related crisis, you may qualify for LIHEAP Crisis Assistance.
The state of The District of Columbia defines “crisis situation” as one where a household:
A “life-threatening crisis situation” also qualifies a household for Crisis Assistance. This occurs when a member of the requires energy for the use of medical life support and:
For qualifying households, the maximum annual benefit amount for LIHEAP Crisis Assistance is a one-time payment of $750.
Learn more about Crisis Assistance on page 12 of the Detailed Model Plan here.
To determine the amount of energy assistance for which you are eligible, the Department of Energy and Environment will consider:
Also, whether you are eligible for regular LIHEAP payments or Crisis Assistance payments will influence your maximum benefit amount.
As of 2022, the maximum annual benefit amount for heating and cooling in the District of Columbia is $1,800 and the minimum annual benefit amount is $250.
To qualify for LIHEAP in The District of Columbia, you must meet the following requirements:
The Department of Energy and Environment prioritizes households with elderly, disabled or young members. Elderly is considered 60 years or older, and young is considered five years old or younger.
Learn more about the LIHEAP financial eligibility requirements in The District of Columbia here.
If you or a member of your family participates in the benefit programs below, then you may automatically be eligible for LIHEAP based on your income:
Eligible households can only apply for LIHEAP assistance from October 1st until September 30th each year. LIHEAP applications cannot be submitted year-round.
To apply for LIHEAP in The District of Columbia, complete the following two steps:
Learn what documents and information you need to complete the process here.
Access the District of Columbia LIHEAP online application here.
Note that applications for Crisis Assistance, for households that meet the state definition of a crisis, can be submitted year-round.
If you have questions about the application process or require assistance, contact the Department of Energy and Environment at (202) 535-2600.
When applying for The District of Columbia LIHEAP benefits, you will need to provide:
The state will need the following documents and information to confirm your eligibility for LIHEAP benefits:
Learn more about the documentation needed during the LIHEAP application process here.
You can call the Department of Energy and Environment at (202) 535-2600 directly to check your application status.
The Department of Energy and Environment will notify you within 30 days of receiving your application if you are approved to receive benefits. All LIHEAP payments are made to the heating or energy provider directly. Benefit payments will not be sent to you.
If you are denied The District of Columbia LIHEAP benefits, you may request a hearing to appeal the decision by writing a statement to the Office of Administrative Hearings (OAH) within 90 days of when you received the denial.
To begin this process, you can:
441 4th Street, N.W.
Suite 450 North
Washington, DC 2000
Once the OAH receives the appeal, they will set up a hearing and notify you of the date, time and location.
If you have questions about the appeal process, contact the Office of Administrative Hearings:
You can also contact the Department of Energy and Environment:
If you have questions about LIHEAP benefits in The District of Columbia or require further assistance, contact the Department of Energy and Environment:
While we are not affiliated with the government in any way, our private company engaged writers to research the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program and compiled a guide that we believe is simple to use and easy to understand. Our goal is to help you get the benefits that you need by providing detailed information on the process.
Our free LIHEAP Guide is filled with helpful information about how to apply for LIHEAP, program eligibility and how to get in touch with local offices. You can view or download our free guide here.