When people speak of getting “welfare,” they tend to think of it as negative but the truth is, the government designed the welfare to subsidize families that are temporarily in need. If you are thinking of applying for welfare, bear in mind that the government will provide you with help only for a period of time. You are required to work to improve your living conditions. There are many forms of welfare existing in the present system. There are HUD homes, food stamps, Medicaid and Supplemental Security Income or SSI. People who are under the welfare system are referred as TANF or Temporary Assistance to Needy Families. Read on how to qualify for those welfare benefits.
- You should be a legal citizen. To qualify for welfare benefits, you should be a legal citizen. Non-citizen persons can still be eligible for welfare provided that they are permanent residents and are not staying in the country illegally. You have to have a social security number to qualify as well. You should produce proof of your age by providing your application with your birth certificate. Be sure you have all the necessary documents to attest your citizenship or residency.
- Enlist in employment trainings. If your family is in welfare support and you are healthy with the age 16 to 60, you are required to improve on your living status by enlisting you on employment trainings or attend school. Doing scholastic training is required as well to stay on the welfare benefits. Remember that the government will not support you for the rest of your life so you have to take the opportunity when you could.
If you lost your job due to being laid off and you have difficulties in finding another job, you are eligible for unemployment welfare. However, there is a period for this support. In Canada, you are entitled to receive monthly income for a year while you try to look for a new job. Anything in excess of one year, you would need to reapply and the government will assess your new application for welfare. In the US, you will be paid 36% of your previous income per week.
- Your financial income should below ideal monthly income. You will be asked to show your financial statement on your income and assets. Everything that is an available resource like bank accounts, stocks, bonds or real estates will be summed up and your expenses would be subtracted from the total. If your total income goes below the allowable income for a household, you are eligible for welfare benefits.
- Ask a caseworker about your status. Each state has different laws concerning welfare so you should check with the different of welfare departments (depending on which welfare you are applying for). For housing welfare, you can check out the HUD website or the FHA (Federal Housing Administration). For food stamps, you should visit fns.usda.gov for more information.
A caseworker can assess your case before you go ahead with your application. He can tell you what to do and if you indeed qualify. Be sure to read official announcements as well. Always rely on official news besides having a caseworker tell you. The caseworker can help you with the document submission as a guide for the whole process.
Always ask questions when you have anything that you don’t understand in the policies. Keep all your filing documented properly and remember to keep a copy of everything you submit to the welfare department.