TANF - Facts & Frequently Asked Questions

TANF Facts & Information


The purpose of the TANF program is to provide temporary assistance for the care of dependent children in their own homes or the homes of relatives by furnishing financial assistance, and self-sufficiency services.


    TANF is federally funded through a block grant from the Department of Health and Human Services. States are required to contribute money equal to 80% of the amount spent on the Aid to Families with Dependent Children (AFDC) and related programs during federal fiscal year 1994. This is the state's Maintenance of Effort (MOE) requirements.

      Types of TANF Benefits

      The Division of Welfare and Supportive Services (DWSS) administers five different TANF benefit programs. Two programs are considered assistance by federal definition and three are considered non-assistance programs. Nevada recognizes family situations vary and the approach for some to meeting their immediate and ongoing needs should be different. When a family may qualify for more than one category, the family has the final decision on which category they wish to receive.


        This is the state's cash assistance program for families with a 'work-eligible adults' in the home. Most parents and needy relative caregivers are defined as 'work-eligible' by federal regulation and are required to meet work participation requirements as a condition of eligibility. For this reason it is commonly referred to as our 'work program'. The head-of-household must enter into a Personal Responsibility Plan for reducing or ending their household's dependency on public assistance. Adult(s), unless they meet an exemption, will be required to engage in a defined number of hours of work activities every week to maintain eligibility for cash benefits. TANF-NEON benefits are considered assistance and Time-Limits do apply.


          This is a cash assistance program for households with no 'work-eligible adults' adults. Generally the monthly cash benefits are paid because the child(ren) is living with a relative, referred to as a relative caregiver, because the parent(s) is not in the home or if they are in the home they are ineligible due to citizenship requirements or receiving SSI. An example of a Child-Only case would be an Aunt applying for assistance on behalf of her niece who is in her care and supervision. Child-Only benefits are considered assistance however Time-Limits do not apply


            This is a one-time lump sum payment to help families who would otherwise be eligible for another program to meet an immediate financial need. The intent is to preserve the family's independence from long-time dependence on Welfare. Recipients of a Self-Sufficiency Grant (SSG) are not eligible to receive TANF benefits for a period of time determined by dividing the SSG benefit amount provided by the maximum TANF benefit for the family size. Any part of a month counts as a full month. Households may receive TANF assistance prior to the end of the ineligible period if a qualifying hardship exists. Although the receipt of SSG benefits are not considered assistance, they can preclude a household from receiving TANF/NEON benefits.Time-Limits do not apply to SSG.


              This program provides monthly cash payments to meet an immediate episode of need and is limited to no more than four months per episode. An episode of need is defined as an unforeseen circumstance such as fire, earthquake, etc. Benefits from the TEMP program are not defined as assistance. Time-Limits do not apply.

                TANF LOAN

                This program provides eligible households with a monthly cash payment to meet the family's immediate basic needs when an adult member has a future anticipated source of income and the expectation is the benefits will be repaid upon receipt of the anticipated income. The expectation is that the benefits will be repaid upon receipt of the anticipated income. Benefits from the Loan program are not defined as 'assistance'. Time-Limits do apply.

                  TANF Assistance Defined (TANF-NEON and CHILD-ONLY):

                  "Assistance" is defined as cash payments, provided to meet a family's ongoing basic needs such as food, shelter, clothing, etc. It may also include: child care, transportation and other support services.

                  Accepting TANF-NEON assistance subjects the household to federal and state time limits on receipt of assistance, including but not limited to: work participation requirements, cooperation with child support enforcement, activities included in federal data reporting, and cooperation with all other eligibility requirements.

                  Accepting Child-Only assistance subjects the household to cooperation with child support enforcement, activities included in federal data reporting, and cooperation with all eligibility requirements.

                    Application Process

                    Those wishing to apply for any TANF benefit must complete an "Application for Assistance". The applicant or their representative may request an application by:

                    • Contacting the local DWSS district office;
                    • Downloading an application from the Division's Website.
                    • Accessing DWSS's online electronic application "ACCESS Nevada"
                    • Completing the application form and faxing it to the local DWSS Office for processing.

                    An eligibility decision is generally made within 45 days from the application date.

                      Eligibility Criteria


                        • Family1

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