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 Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program provides financial assistance to low-income families. The goal of TANF is to help families become financially self-sufficient. States and U.S. Territories receive block grants from the federal government, which are used to fund each state and territory’s specific TANF program.
Learn more about the TANF program and its primary purposes here.
In Alaska, the TANF program is known as the Alaska Temporary Assistance Program (ATAP). To learn more about ATAP and the assistance benefits it provides, visit the Alaska ATAP website here.
Alaska Temporary Assistance Program (ATAP) provides temporary financial assistance to financially support families in need. The ATAP program also provides eligible families with work preparation services to help them re-enter the workforce or find more stable employment. The program helps with childcare costs, so parents can work.
For more information on the services, the ATAP program provides to participating families, review the Alaska ATAP website here.
ATAP and Food Assistance are both assistance programs administered by the Alaska Division of Public Assistance. While Food Assistance benefits can only be used to purchase foods that have been approved by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, ATAP benefits are financial assistance benefits that can be used however the participant sees fit, with some restrictions.
To learn more about the restrictions on ATAP expenditures, visit the ATAP digital manual here.
Both ATAP and Food Assistance benefits can be given to participants on an electronic benefits transfer (EBT) card. However, ATAP benefits can be transferred directly into a participant’s bank account or withdrawn from an approved ATM. Food Assistance benefits cannot.
Most ATAP participants also qualify for Food Assistance due to the low-income requirement of both programs. For more information about Food Assistance, click here.
To apply for Food Assistance and/or ATAP, visit the myAlaska benefit portal here.
If you have questions about ATAP or Food Assistance, call the Division of Public Assistance at (907) 465-3347.
The exact benefit amount a family will receive each month will depend on their household income, size and resources.
Eligible households can receive a maximum of:
Families may be able to receive these benefits for up to 60 months throughout their lifetime.
Learn more information about ATAP and benefit amounts in Alaska on page 4 of the Alaska TANF State Plan here.
To qualify for ATAP in Alaska, you must meet the following requirements:
Learn more about income requirements here and work and training requirements here.
Caretakers of children who cannot be taken care of by their immediate family may also qualify for benefits.
To learn more about who can receive ATAP benefits, click here.
Before you apply for the Alaska Temporary Assistance Program, complete the following three steps:
Learn about the ATAP eligibility requirements here.
Review the Application for Services here to find out what information and documents you will need to apply for ATAP.
To apply for ATAP online, create an account on the myAlaska benefit portal here and fill out the virtual application form.
To apply for ATAP in person or by phone, click here to find the nearest Alaska Division of Public Assistance office location and contact information.
To apply for ATAP by fax or by mail, fill out the Application for Services here and send it with copies of your necessary documents to your district Public Assistance office listed on the last page.
If you have any further questions about the application process, call the Alaska Division of Public Assistance at (907) 465-3347.
Depending on your method of application, you can check your application status in the following ways:
If you applied for ATAP online, by phone, by mail or by fax, you may receive a notice from the Division of Public Assistance for an interview in person or by phone. You would have completed the interview if you applied in person.
If you're approved, the Division of Public Assistance will mail your determination, your benefit amount and how you will be receiving the benefits within 30 days.
Your ATAP benefits will be deposited the first of each month either into a valid bank account listed on your application or on an EBT card you will receive in the mail. Once you receive your benefits, you can use them to support your family as you see fit, while following the restrictions.
Note that if you receive an EBT card, you will only be allowed to purchase items at stores that display the Quest Logo, and you can only withdraw cash from ATMs that display the Quest Logo.
Learn more information about how to use your EBT card and how benefits will be distributed here.
If you require additional assistance or have questions about your determination, call the Division of Public Assistance at (907) 465-3347.
If you do not agree with the ATAP benefit decision given to you by the Alaska Division of Public Assistance, you can appeal your decision within 30 days of receiving your determination letter.
To file an appeal in person, visit your local Public Assistance Office. You will need to speak with a representative and tell them why you are appealing your determination. You will also need to bring your benefit determination letter and evidence that supports your appeal. Find your nearest location here.
To file an appeal by phone, call the Division of Public Assistance at (907) 465-3347 or call the Marketplace at (800) 318-2596. You can also contact your local Public Assistance office. Click here to find the nearest Alaska Division of Public Assistance office location and contact information.
For more information on the appeal process, read page 3 of the Application for Services here.
For help with obtaining Alaska Temporary Assistance Program or for any further questions about your application, call the Alaska Division of Public Assistance at (907) 465-3347.
You can also visit or call a local Division of Public Assistance Office for further assistance. Find your nearest location here.
Offices and services are available Monday through Friday from 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM, but ATAP applications and interviews stop at 3:00 PM.
While we are not affiliated with the government in any way, our private company engaged writers to research the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families program and compiled a guide and these answers to frequently asked questions. Our goal is to help you get the benefits that you need by providing useful information on the process.
Our free TANF Guide is filled with helpful information about how to apply, program eligibility requirements and how to get in touch with local offices. You can view or download our free guide here.