TANF Application Forms by State

Filing a Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) Application – also known as a TANF Benefits Application – is the first step in applying for a program that helps families with children when the parents, legal guardians, or other responsible relatives are unable to provide for the basic needs of their family – food, housing, utilities, and expenses other than medical.

TANF Application Forms by State

Each state and county decides which benefits it will provide to families that require financial assistance and other support services like work assistance, child care assistance, and job preparation. States have the right to broad flexibility in carrying out their programs – they decide the type and amount of payments, the range of other services, and the eligibility rules for applicants. The specific eligibility criteria differ from state to state – you need to know which requirements to meet to obtain financial assistance payments and other types of services and benefits.

AlabamaHawaiiMassachusetts (e-filing only)New Mexico (e-filing only)South Dakota
AlaskaIdahoMichiganNew YorkTennessee
ArizonaIllinoisMinnesotaNorth Carolina (apply at a local DSS office)Texas
Arkansas (by phone only)Indiana (e-filing only)MississippiNorth DakotaUtah
California (e-filing only)Iowa (apply at a local DHS office)MissouriOhioVermont
ColoradoKansasMontana (e-filing only)OklahomaVirginia
ConnecticutKentuckyNebraska (e-filing only)OregonWashington
DelawareLouisianaNevadaPennsylvaniaWest Virginia
Florida (e-filing only)MaineNew HampshireRhode IslandWisconsin
GeorgiaMaryland (apply at a local DHR office)New Jersey (e-filing only)South CarolinaWyoming

What Is the Purpose of the TANF Program?

The purpose of the government-funded TANF program is to provide assistance to families in need so that the children are cared for in their own homes, promote job preparation and employment, reduce and prevent the dependency of parents on government benefits, and encourage the maintenance of families by emphasizing personal responsibility. In most cases, the TANF benefits are available for a maximum of five years.

General eligibility requirements for the TANF program are as follows:

  • You are pregnant or have a child under age 19 who lives with you;
  • If your child is 18, they must be a full-time student who graduates from high school before 19;
  • You are a U.S. citizen or an eligible immigrant;
  • You are prepared to develop a plan to become self-sufficient and are ready to follow it.

What Does TANF Provide?

When you complete a TANF Application Form, you request the following services:

  • Temporary cash assistance for basic needs – food, housing, clothing, etc.;
  • Transitional services that help families become financially independent – GED preparation, postsecondary education, English classes, job readiness training, job retention services, help with child care, and transportation;
  • Screening for issues related to mental health and substance abuse and referrals to services that can help address them.

Not the program you were looking for? Check out these related topics:




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This Form is used for applying for financial assistance in Idaho. The HW2000 Application for Assistance is used to request benefits and support from the state. It allows individuals to apply for various programs and services aimed at helping them meet their basic needs and improve their quality of life.

Este formulario es utilizado en el estado de Michigan para determinar la elegibilidad de los solicitantes al programa de Asistencia Temporal para Familias Necesitadas (TANF), en español.

This form is used for applying for public assistance in the state of Colorado. It helps individuals and families access various government programs for financial support and services.

This form is used for applying for benefits in the state of Kansas. It is an application form that allows individuals to request various types of benefits from the government.

This Form is used for applying for various benefits in the state of Minnesota. It combines multiple application forms into one to streamline the application process.

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