TANF Benefits in Florida


Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) provides temporary cash benefits to low-income households with dependent children as one of the U.S. federal welfare programs. TANF cash benefits in Florida are available to needy families as a means to become self-sufficient. Many of the TANF program benefits include both education and workforce opportunities through specific participation requirements. State residents wondering, “How do I get TANF benefits in Florida?” should understand that the program goes by the name Temporary Cash Assistance (TCA). While temporary cash benefits are part of a federally funded block-grant program, the state government administers it. To learn more about TANF benefits in Florida, read from the topics below:

  • How do I get TANF benefits in Florida?
  • What do Florida TANF program benefits include?
  • Accessing TANF cash benefits in Florida

How do I get TANF benefits in Florida?

TANF program benefits are only available to Florida residents who meet certain criteria. Households that are eligible for TANF benefits are those with children younger than 18 years of age or 19 years of age if still enrolled in high school. TANF cash benefits also extend to women in their ninth month of pregnancy or third trimester if ordered by their physicians to cease working due to their condition. Household within these specific categories may be eligible for temporary cash benefits if applicants also meet asset and income requirements. Find out more about applying for TANF benefits in our digital guide, downloadable here.

What do Florida TANF program benefits include?

The intention of TANF program benefits is to help Florida household that are struggling financially. TANF benefits in Florida help with childcare services, transportation and job training. Click here to find out more about the TANF program benefits in our free guide. Some types of temporary cash benefits TANF provides are below.

Florida Temporary Cash Benefits Relocation Assistance

TANF may issue temporary cash benefits in order to help a family escape domestic violence. Likewise, TANF cash benefits are available for families that are moving to a new Florida location in order to seek more beneficial job opportunities. Whereas TANF benefits are accessible in monthly installments, families may elect the opportunity to take one lump amount to assist with the relocation. Note that families that accept lump-sum relocation assistance are not eligible for additional benefits for another six months. In an emergency, officials will review TANF benefits again to extend another lump-sum payment possibly.

Housing Benefits

Temporary cash benefits can prevent evictions, reverse homelessness or help obtain new housing. Florida TANF benefits help pay for housing issues such as rent, mortgages and utilities that are in arrears. TANF cash benefits can also cover first and last month rent as well as a security deposit to obtain housing. Households eligible for TANF program benefits may also meet eligibility requirements for Section 8 housing in addition to other housing assistance programs in the state.

Up-front Diversion Benefits

TANF benefits help in emergencies when money is required immediately. Temporary cash benefits can repair a motor vehicle the family relies on for transportation or handle major repairs at home, such as a broken water heater. Florida TANF may pay temporary cash benefits up to $1,000 to a household as a one-time payment. The family may not apply for TANF program benefits again for three months, except when there is another emergency. Should the family reapply within three months of the initial diversion payment, they will be required to pay back the whole diversion payment over the course of eight months.

Cash Severance Benefits

Participants who receive monthly TANF benefits and decide to terminate their benefits early may qualify for a one-time final payment of $1,000. TANF enrollees must meet certain requirements in order to qualify, such as receiving earnings while being employed. Applicants cannot apply for TANF program benefits again for six months, the only exception being an emergency.

Accessing TANF Cash Benefits in Florida

Once approved for TANF program benefits in Florida, DCF mails participants an electronic benefits transfer (EBT) card. To use their temporary cash benefits, participants must select a personal identification number (PIN). TANF cash benefits are available through the EBT card at point-of-sale (POS) transactions, such as the grocery store, retail stores, gas stations or any other place that accepts debit cards. Find out more about accessing TANF benefits from our free downloadable guide.

The purpose of temporary cash benefits is to help families get back on their feet and to help them return to being self-sufficient. Participants may use their TANF benefits to purchase items or pay bills in order to reach that goal. However, the federal government mandated certain restrictions and prohibited usage of TANF program benefits in gaming or gambling establishments, liquor stores and any adult entertainment venues. Florida TANF does not permit participants to use TANF cash benefits at these locations even if the EBT card is not automatically blocked.

What Assistance Benefits Does the Department of Children and Families Provide?

Various assistance benefits are available to residents of Florida through the Department of Children and Families (DCF). Families can receive benefits that allow them to buy nutritious groceries, save money on school lunch for their children and obtain temporary financial assistance. Additionally, petitioners who qualify for one assistance program are also typically eligible for other benefits in Florida. Find out how to qualify for benefits through Florida’s DCF and how to apply for them by downloading our comprehensive guide.

Who Can Receive Assistance Benefits in Florida?

Each assistance program offered through Florida’s Department of Children and Families has various eligibility qualifications that petitioners must meet in order to enroll. Household size and income are only a few factors that are typically taken into account. For more details on eligibility for Florida DCF assistance programs, download our guide.