Work Requirements

TANF participants are required to work in allowable work activities a minimum of 30 hours each week. If you have a child under six years old, your weekly minimum requirement is 20 hours.

A Personal Responsibility Agreement is a written and signed agreement between you and the TANF Program. You must agree to the following:

  • TANF assistance is temporary.
  • TANF is a work program.
  • It is your responsibility to find and keep work.
  • You will accept responsibility for yourself and your children.
  • You will follow all program conditions such as developing a work plan, keeping appointments, participating in a work activity, completing and submitting time sheets, and making sure your children attend school.

Your Personal Responsibility Plan will tell you what work activities you have and how many hours you must work. It is very important that you follow the activities you’ve outlined in your Personal Responsibility Plan.

The following work activities count towards the number of hours you need to work:

  • Working in a Job: Employers hire you just like other employees. Employers who hire cash benefit recipients may be eligible for a tax credit up to $2,400 through the Work Opportunity Tax Credit Program.
  • On-the-Job Training: Employers teach you occupation-specific skills and the methods used in their business. You earn wages while being trained and then remain employed when the training is completed. Employers are reimbursed a pre-determined amount (usually 50% of wages paid) to help offset the cost and the lower productivity associated with training new workers.
  • Combined Work and Education Activity (CWEA): The TANF Program has a post-secondary education activity called Combined Work and Education Activity. You must be enrolled or admitted as a full-time student (minimum of 12 credit hours) in an undergraduate program at a North Central Association of Colleges and Secondary Schools (NCACSS) credited institution. Your course of study must result in a marketable skill directly related to employment that leads to self sufficiency. Additional requirements include:
    • You must have enough combined total hours to meet the work requirements for your household. You may use between 12 and 15 education credit hours plus other approved work activities to meet the standard. (The work requirement is 30 hours each week, or 20 hours each week if you have a child under six years old.)
    • You must maintain a cumulative 2.5 GPA.
    • CWEA is limited to 24 months (including 12 months of vocational education).
  • Vocational Training: Vocational education must prepare you for a marketable job. This can be your primary work activity for up to 12 months.
  • High School Attendance: If you are a teenage parent under age 20.
  • Job Search or Job Club: Activities to help prepare you for work.
  • Community Work: You work for your monthly cash payment with public or private nonprofit employers.