Apply For Hawaii TANF Benefits

Learn how to apply for Hawaii TANF. The Temporary Assistance for Needy Families program, called Hawaii Temporary Assistance for Needy Families, may help you become self-supportive while receiving monthly cash benefits to meet your everyday needs such as rent, utilities, clothes, transportation, or additional expenses.

Sometimes you may not be eligible to receive TANF for yourself, but a child or children in your household may. The TANF program is administered by the Department of Human Services. In most cases, in order to qualify for TANF you must meet both types of eligibility, categorical and financial.

Additionally, to qualify for TANF there are work requirements. The HI TANF program requires most adults be employed or participate in certain work-related activities, which you will be assigned for a certain number of hours on a weekly basis in order to continue receiving TANF benefits.

The total number of hours needed to fulfill your work activity requirement depends on your family composition. Qualified state residents are required to produce information including household income, age, citizenship and resources.

Only household members who are eligible for Hawaii TANF can receive welfare benefits. For more information about applying for HI TANF benefits, view the information below. If you still have questions or issues, then contact TANF Hawaii.

The Hawaii TANF program provide monthly cash benefits to families for food, clothing, shelter, and other essentials. To qualify for TANF, a family must include children under the age of 19 and earn a total gross income under 185% of the 2006 Federal Poverty Level (FPL).

For a household of three persons, this means the monthly gross income must be less than $2,941 and the net income must be under $610, if the household includes an employable adult.

For households where all adults are disabled, care is required for a disabled household member, or there is a child younger than six months of age, the net income must be under $763 per month. Please note, assets are disregarded under the Hawaii TANF program.

Family participation in Hawaii TANF depends on the household composition. Where all members are US citizens the family is eligible for federally-funded welfare under. The state department implemented a new eligibility requirement where applicants are referred to Hawaii's work program and expected to fulfill a compliance period prior to approval of benefits. The purpose is to meet the work participation rates and other program requirements mandated by the federal government.

The purpose of the Hawaii TANF program is to provide assistance to needy families, including:

  • Direct cash payment to the family
  • Self-Sufficiency Program
  • Income Disregard
  • Financial Counseling

TANF is subject to established eligibility criteria that will be explained to you by your DHS worker. TANF applicants and recipient are referred to the Department's First-to-Work program to prepare for self-sufficiency. An assigned case manager will help you reach your employment goals with any of the following activities and supportive services:

  • Job Search and Job Preparedness
  • Subsidized/Unsubsidized Employment
  • GED Prep
  • Job Skills Training
  • Vocational Education
  • On-the Job Training
  • Domestic Violence Services
  • On-Going Counseling & Support

Supportive Services:

  • Child Care Subsidies
  • Transportation Assistance
  • Work-Related Expenses

DHS has partnered with a wide variety of community agencies to provide Hawaii families with programs designed to help prevent teen and out-of-wedlock pregnancies. These programs include:

  • After-School Programs
  • Youth Abstinence and Pregnancy Prevention
  • Positive Youth Development
  • Youth Mentoring

Another goal of the Hawaii TANF program is to encourage the formation and maintenance of two-parent families. Programs intended to teach the skills necessary to build strong families are made available by DHS and include:

  • Fatherhood Services
  • Family Strengthening
  • Marriage/Couples Counseling
  • Parenting Skills
  • Home-Based Parenting & Family Counseling

Apply for Hawaii TANF benefits

To start the application process, you will need to find a BESS (Benefit, Employment & Support Services) office. Search for a BESS office near you. They can help you with any questions you might have and setup an appointment to fill out the Hawaii TANF application form and provide any additional information needed. To download a copy of the application form, click here.

I was denied TANF benefits. What can I do?

State and local agencies are responsible for establishing the eligibility criteria and procedures that apply in their programs, not the Federal government. If you disagree with a decision regarding welfare benefits, you have the right to file an appeal. For more information about your state's appeals procedures, contact the HI TANF office.