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.

Oregon LIHEAP FAQ Sheet

Table of Contents 

What Is the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program?

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 Oregon, LIHEAP is administered by the Oregon Housing and Community Services (OHCS) through Community Action Agencies (CAAs). Therefore, LIHEAP procedures, policies, and application methods may vary by the county office.

Learn more about LIHEAP by reviewing the federal program fact sheet here.

For more information about LIHEAP in Oregon, click here.

What Does LIHEAP Cover in Oregon?

Oregon Community Action Agencies oversee LIHEAP benefits and provides financial assistance for heating and cooling expenses to qualified households. Financial assistance can include payment for:

  • Past-due utility bills
  • Deliverable fuel
  • Disconnection/reconnection fees
  • Repairs and replacements of worn parts on heating units
  • Home weatherization

For more information about LIHEAP’s heating assistance initiative in Oregon, see the Oregon state 2022 LIHEAP Detailed Model Plan here.

About LIHEAP Crisis Assistance

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 Oregon defines a “crisis situation” as one where a household:

  • Faces an energy burden that depletes or threatens to deplete financial resources, or
  • Faces an energy burden that poses a potential health or safety threat to the well-being of the household.

A “life-threatening crisis situation” also qualifies a household for Crisis Assistance. This occurs when:

  • A member of the household is a medical or health risk because of the energy loss,
  • A member of the household has a condition that requires the use of a medical device/medication that requires energy OR
  • A household has no more than 18 hours of bulk fuel remaining during winter when heating is required.

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 LIHEAP Detailed Model Plan here.

How Much Assistance Does LIHEAP Provide in Oregon?

To determine the amount of energy assistance for which you are eligible, the local Community Action Agencies will consider:

  1. Your household size and income for the month prior to your application
  2. The fuel type you need (electricity, propane, natural gas, or heating oil)

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 or cooling in Oregon is $1,350 and the minimum annual benefit amount is $200.

How to Qualify for LIHEAP in Oregon

To qualify for LIHEAP in Oregon, you must meet the following requirements:

  • Be a resident of the state
  • At least one household member must be a U.S. citizen or a lawful permanent resident
  • Have an out-of-pocket energy expense from an account opened in the name of the head of the household or their spouse
  • Have an annual income that is less than the LIHEAP income limit for your household size. To view the annual income limits, click here.

Learn more about the LIHEAP financial eligibility requirements in Oregon 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:

  • Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP). Learn more here.
  • Supplemental Security Income (SSI). Learn more here.
  • Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF). Learn more here.

How to Apply for LIHEAP in Oregon

Eligible households can only apply for LIHEAP energy assistance year-round.

To apply for LIHEAP in Oregon, you must contact your local Community Action Agency. LIHEAP procedures and policies vary by the county office, but you usually need to complete the following three steps:

  1. Gather the documentation and information you will need for the application.

Learn what documents and information you need to complete the process on page 9 here.

  1. Choose how you are going to apply. 

Find out which application methods are available by contacting your nearest CAA office found here.

  1. Submit the LIHEAP application and other required documents.

If you have questions about the application process or require assistance, contact your nearest Community Action Agency (CAA) office. Find your nearest CAA office and contact information here.

What You Will Need to Apply

When applying for Oregon LIHEAP benefits, you will need to provide:

  • Personal and financial information about yourself and the members of your household
  • Details about your home and its heating

The state may need the following documents and information to confirm your eligibility for LIHEAP benefits:

  • Names, birth dates and Social Security numbers for all household members
  • Utility bill information (vendor name and account number)
  • Residence information (landlord’s name, address and phone number, if renting)
  • Income verification (pay stubs)

Learn more about the documentation needed during the LIHEAP application process on page 9 here.

How to Check Your Application Status

You can call the Community Action Agency office where you applied to check your application status directly.

Click here to find your local office and contact information.

What Happens After You Apply for LIHEAP in Oregon?

Your local Oregon Community Action Agency will notify you after your application has been processed 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.

How to Appeal a Denial of Benefits

If you are denied Oregon LIHEAP benefits, you may request a hearing to appeal the decision by writing a statement to your local Community Action Agency office where you applied within 30 days after you receive the denial. Find your nearest local office here.

You can also mail a fair hearing request to Oregon Housing and Community Services by emailing energyassistance@oregon.gov or mailing a written request to:

725 Summer Street NE, Suite B
Salem, OR 97301

Need More Help?

If you have questions about LIHEAP benefits in Oregon or require further assistance, contact your local Community Action Agency office, and you can find your nearest office and contact information here.

Or, you can contact the Oregon Energy Assistance Program at (800) 453-5111 option 2 and energyassistance@oregon.gov.

View or Download Our Free Guide

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.

Last Updated: September 20, 2022