Types of cash assistance programs in Maryland.
There are three different cash assistance programs available in Maryland. Each of them is focused on a certain group of individuals, whether they are living in poverty, disabled, or facing a crisis. But each of the resources available in Maryland will provide free cash for paying bills and addressing basic needs around housing, food, and self-sufficiency.
Each of the programs is paid for by the government using both federal and state money. Applications can be made online, over the phone, or in person. The options available include:
- TCA, or Temporary Cash Assistance which is the state’s version of TANF.
- Temporary Disability Assistance (TDAP) is short term financial assistance while applications for SSI or SSDI are being approved.
- Emergency Assistance to Families with Children, or EAFC, is another government benefit that can provide cash for paying bills, utilities, cover medications, or other emergency situations.
Find more details on each of these welfare type benefits below. No matter which resource is used, the government cash can help pay for basic needs, food, and expenses while the client gains financial independence. As the Maryland cash based programs all encourage personal independence of the family over the long term.
Cash and welfare programs in Maryland
EAFC is for housing expenses, including rent, heating, energy, or light bills. There needs to be proof of the emergency, and the crisis can’t have been caused by the family themselves, such as leaving their job. Other criteria for the program include the applicant needs to have an eviction or utility disconnection notice; the household needs to have a kid under the age of 22, and income conditions are also in place. If approved by the Department of Social Services there may be emergency cash given to the family to help them pay their housing costs so they are not evicted or homelessness.
The state’s version of TANF - Temporary Assistance to Needy Families program is for very low income families or residents living in poverty. They can apply to the Maryland Temporary Cash Assistance program, also known as TCA. Applications can be made online or at a local Department of Social Services office.
The average TCA payment is over $300 per month, but it depends on family size, the number of children, and also government funding levels. Calculators at are a DSS office, and staff can tell applicants what their monthly payment would be. The cash can pay for bills ranging from utilities to rent, monthly grocery costs, clothing, car or bus passes and much more. Other needs may also be addressed.
The goal of the Maryland Temporary Cash Assistance program is to get the parent to participate in work type activities, whether it is a job, training, or volunteering. In addition, the kids need to be going to school, the parent can’t be abusing substances, and the applicant also needs to have children. However Temporary Cash Assistance can also help single mothers or fathers pay their bills too.
Last but not least is the state of Maryland Temporary Disability Assistance, which is also called TDAP. This provides cash to them while they are applying for, and waiting on, their federal government disability payments to start. Most people apply for Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and are waiting on that benefit, so the state helps them pay their bills during that window of time. In addition, TDAP also requires the applicant to have children at home too. There are other resources that provide financial aid when waiting on disability.
To apply for any of these cash assistance programs, they all require the applicant to have one or more children. But single parents can get help. Other documentation needed includes Proof of Address including a lease or mortgage statement; proof of income from all sources, including a job, SSI, child support, or anything else. In addition, copies of bills around food, utilities, rent, and more should be brought. The Maryland Department of Social Services have staff members who can process applications for all of the cash based programs, or residents can dial 1-800-332-6347 or apply online at DSS.