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 West Virginia, the TANF program is known as WV Works. To learn more about WV WORKS and the assistance benefits it provides, visit the West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources website here.
Temporary Assistance for Families in West Virginia (WV WORKS) provides temporary assistance to financially support families in need. The WV WORKS program also provides eligible families with work preparation services to help them re-enter the workforce or find more stable employment.
For more information on the services the WV WORKS program provides to participating families, review the West Virginia WV Works found here.
WV WORKS and Food Assistance are both assistance programs administered by the West Virginia Department of Health and Human Services. While Food Assistance benefits can only be used to purchase foods that have been approved by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, WV WORKS benefits are money that can be used however the participant sees fit, with some restrictions.
To learn more about the restrictions on WV WORKS expenditures, visit the Department of Health and Human Resources website here.
Both WV WORKS and Food Assistance benefits can be given to participants on an electronic benefits transfer (EBT) card. However, WV WORKS benefits can be transferred directly into a participant’s bank account or withdrawn from an approved ATM. Food Assistance benefits cannot.
Many WV WORKS 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 WV WORKS, visit the West Virginia Benefit Portal here.
If you have questions about WV WORKS or Food Assistance, call the Department of Health and Human Services at (304) 558-0628.
The exact benefit amount a family will receive each month will depend on their household income, size and resources.
Eligible families can receive a $250 one-time Self-Sufficiency Achievement Bonus for retaining employment. Families can receive these benefits and more for up to 24 months throughout their lifetime.
Learn more information about WV WORKS and benefit amounts in West Virginia here.
To qualify for WV WORKS in West Virginia, you must meet the following requirements:
Learn more about income requirements and work and training requirements here.
Caretakers of children who cannot be taken care of by their immediate family may also qualify for benefits under the Caretaker Relative Grant or Child-Only WV WORKS Grant. This grant takes into consideration the situation of emergency caregivers and will only count the resources and the income of the child (if any) and not those of the caretaker.
To learn more about who can receive WV WORKS benefits, click here.
Before you apply for Temporary Assistance for Families in West Virginia, complete the following three steps:
Learn about the WV WORKS eligibility requirements here.
Find a list of what you need to apply on the West Virginia Department of Health and Human Services website here.
To apply for WV WORKS online, create an account on West Virginia’s Assistance Portal here and fill out the virtual application form.
To apply for WV WORKS in person, click here to find the nearest field office location.
To apply for WV WORKS by mail, fill out the Application for Assistance here and send it with copies of your necessary documents to your local field office here.
If you have any further questions about the application process, call the West Virginia Department of Health and Human Services at (304) 558-0628.
Depending on your method of application, you can check your application status in the following ways:
If you applied for WV WORKS online, in person or by phone, you should receive a notice in the mail from the Department of Health and Human Services within 30 days of receiving your application with your determination, your benefit amount and how you will be receiving the benefits, if you are eligible.
If you have a valid bank account listed on your application, your WV WORKS benefits will be deposited within 14 days of when you receive your determination letter. Otherwise, you will receive an EBT card in the mail within 14 days.
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 (304) 558-0628.
If you do not agree with the benefit decision given to you by the West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources (DHHR), you can appeal your decision in person or by mail within 30 days of receiving your determination letter.
To file an appeal in person, visit a local Department of Health and Human Resources office and either request a Fair Hearing request form or print it out ahead of time here and turn it into the DHHR office designated at the top of your determination letter.
To file a request for a Fair Hearing by mail, print and fill out the request form here and mail it to the DHHR office indicated at the top of your designation letter.
If you need assistance filing your appeal call the client services line at 1 (800) 642-8589.
For help with obtaining Temporary Assistance for Families in West Virginia, or for any further questions about your application, call the West Virginia Department of Health and Human Services Bureau of Children at Families at (304) 558-0628.
To send the West Virginia Department of Health and Human Services information physically, you can fax your documents or questions to (304) 558-4194 or mail them to the following address:
West Virginia Department of Health and Human ResourcesBureau for Children and Families
350 Capitol Street, Room 730
Charleston, West Virginia 25301
You can also visit or call a local field 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.
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.