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A Message from the Director. Welcome to TANF Orientation. We are all faced with a series of great opportunities brilliantly disguised as impossible situations. Charles P. Swindoll. Office for Family Independence (OFI). Works with people to help them find ways to support their families

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welcome to tanf orientation
Welcome toTANF Orientation
  • We are all faced with a series of great opportunities brilliantly disguised as impossible situations.
        • Charles P. Swindoll
office for family independence ofi
Office for Family Independence (OFI)

Works with people to help them find ways to support their families

  • Eligibility
  • Child Support Enforcement
ofi programs
OFI Programs
  • TANF
  • Parents as Scholars (PaS)
  • Food Supplement
  • Medical Assistance
  • Emergency Assistance
tanf what does tanf mean to you
TANFWhat does TANF mean to you?

TANF is:

  • Temporary
  • Assistance(for)
  • Needy
  • Families
tanf time limits
TANF Time Limits

Federal and state law has placed a lifetime limit on receipt of TANF cash assistance for families of 60 months or 5 years.

approaching your 60 months
Approaching Your 60 Months
  • You will be notified 120 days prior to reaching your 60th month.
  • You will have the opportunity to further discuss with your ASPIRE worker your options to becoming self-sufficient.
you have the right
You have the RIGHT:
  • To be treated with respect
  • To apply at any time without discrimination
  • To confidentiality
  • To our decision in writing
  • To claim “Good Cause”
  • To appeal if you disagree with our decision
you have responsibilities
You have responsibilities
  • Follow through with your Family Contract
  • Provide information and verifications timely
  • Report all changes
  • Call us if you are unable to keep your agreement with us
  • To become successful
what is good cause
What is Good Cause?

Good Cause is our decision that you had a good reason for not doing (or postponing) something that your worker asked you to do.


What do you know about ASPIRE?

ASPIRE provides opportunities and support leading to employment


ASPIRE will give you the opportunity to:

  • Develop YOUR plan for reaching your goal of self-support
  • Explore the local job market
  • Develop skills to help you:
    • Get ready for going to work
    • Find a job
    • Succeed on the job
  • Finish high school
  • Become self-supporting
parents as scholars pas
Parents as Scholars (PaS)

Educational Opportunity

  • Same eligibility requirements as TANF
  • Same benefits as TANF for parents enrolled in a 2-4 year college program
  • Tuition comes from other sources

Talk to your ASPIRE Specialist!

what are your goals
What are Your Goals?

What will YOU need to get started on your road to success?

aspire activities
ASPIRE Activities
  • Work Goals
    • On the job training
    • Job club
    • Job search
    • Current employment - those who currently have a job
    • Field training
  • Training & Educational Needs
    • High school diploma / GED programs
    • Short term certificate / vocational programs
    • PaS Program
aspire support services
ASPIRE Support Services
  • Child Care
  • Transportation
  • Car repairs and insurance
  • Clothing for a job
  • Eye glasses and dental care
  • Other job related services
replacing the tanf benefit
Replacing the TANF Benefit

ReceivingTANF only for household of 3 -

$485 per month

Working at least 30 hours per week at $7.50 per hour = $774 per month (after taxes)


Both families receive food supplement & medical help

earned income tax credit eitc
Earned Income Tax Credit(EITC)
  • EITC is a refundable federal income tax credit for low to moderate income working individuals and families.
  • Congress approved the tax credit in 1975 to offset the burden of social security taxes and to provide an incentive to work.
  • When EITC exceeds the amount of taxes owed, it results in a tax refund to those who claim and qualify for the credit.
Division of Support Enforcement & Recovery (DSER)

Every child has the right to be supported by both parents...

role of dser
Role of DSER
  • Locate non-TANF parent
  • Establish paternity
  • Establish support orders which can include medical support, child support and child care
  • Enforce support orders
locating the non tanf parent
Locating the Non-TANF Parent
  • DSER must first know where the parent responsible for paying child support is living or working
  • DSER gets addresses and/or employment information from many sources


are often the best source of information…

how paternity is established
How Paternity Is Established?

Once the parent is located paternity must be established

  • The named father must be given notice
  • A simple DNA test is done
  • Paternity can be legally established by a court order or by both parents signing a voluntary acknowledgement form
benefits of establishing paternity
Benefits of Establishing Paternity
  • The child knows who his or her father is
  • The child has inheritance rights if the father dies
  • The child can get medical information about the father’s family history
  • The child gets Social Security benefits if the father becomes disabled
Support Orders

After the parent is located and paternity has been determined…

  • A support order will be established
  • Enforcement can begin and the family can get child support
  • If the parent who is supposed to pay child support does not pay DSER has many ways to enforce a child support order
your role
Your Role

Cooperation with DSER is required to receive TANF and Child Support.You must:

  • Sign over rights to child support while on TANF
  • Provide information about the other parent
  • Forward child support payments made directly to you from the other parent
  • Inform DSER of changes

Remember: You may be excused from cooperation if Good Cause is granted.

how much child support will i get
How much child support will I get?

If child support is paid on time, your family may get “Pass Through and Gap payments”

  • If you currently receive child support, you may not continue to receive all of that support
  • “Pass Through” is the first $50 collected. This money is “passed through” to you
  • “Gap payments” are made when more support is collected. You may get additional payments depending on how much other income you have.
what dser cannot do
What DSER Cannot Do

DSER cannot:

  • Give legal advice
  • Help w/ divorce or alimony
  • Help w/ custody or property disputes
  • Enforce visitation rights
to contact dser
To Contact DSER

The following is on the yellow card handout:


DSER’s 24 hours a day, 7 days a week

automated telephone service

You may reach a Case Review Specialist between 10:00 am and 3:00 pm Monday thru Friday

Address: Case Review Unit, SHS #11,

Augusta, ME 04333

Fax: (207) 287-2334

E-mail: [email protected]


YOU did it!

What next?

post tanf help
Post TANF Help
  • Transitional Services include:
    • Child Care
    • Transportation
    • Worker Supplement Benefit (WSB)
    • Transitional Food Assistance (TFA)
    • Medical Assistance
    • Non-Welfare Child Support
help us help you
Help us help you……
  • Open and read any mail from DHHS
  • Promptly call us if you cannot keep an appointment or complete an activity
  • Inform us of any changes in your household as they happen
  • Keep and look over the information provided today about your benefits
benefits are paid by
Benefits are paid by:
  • Direct Deposit to your bank account
  • Some money can be sent directly to a vendor
  • Placed on an Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) card
    • Balance printed on store receipt
    • Call 1-800-477-7428
    • Swipe card in machine
    • Visit www.PineTreeCard.com
    • Report a lost card immediately
  • TANF provides temporary assistance while you prepare for work
  • ASPIRE helps with employment, training, education and support services
  • DSER helps your child receive support from his/her other parent
  • Transitional Services help out when working and your TANF benefits end
thank you for attending
Thank you for attending

In a few moments you will meet with your ASPIRE Specialist

Be thinking about your Goals

How will you use this Opportunity to become self-supporting and successful?

Revised 6/20/12