Arizona Family Assistance Services FAQ

  1. Can I use food assistance benefits at a farmer’s market in Arizona?
  2.  
    In many cases, you can use Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) and Women, Infants and Children (WIC) benefits at farmer’s markets. Benefits can only be used at certain farmers’ markets that have agreed to work with these programs. Ask your local benefits office for a list of participating markets.

  3. What are my responsibilities if I receive public assistance in Arizona?
  4.  
    While the specific requirements vary for each program, you generally are required to provide complete and accurate household information, comply with each program’s rules and regulations, attend interviews when required and report any important changes that will affect your eligibility. Download our free guide for details about the initial and ongoing eligibility requirements for beneficiaries of assistance programs in Arizona.

  5. If I receive public assistance in Arizona, then what changes do I need to report?
  6.  
    When you receive cash, nutrition or medical assistance, you are always required to report changes to your address, income and household members. In some situations, it is necessary to report changes to school attendance, housing expenses, marital status and resources. Always contact the appropriate benefit office after such changes occur.

  7. Can someone complete my Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) interview for me?
  8.  
    If you elect a household representative, then he or she may complete your interview and use your SNAP benefits on your behalf. You must name an official representative in writing.

  9. Can I use an electronic benefits transfer (EBT) card at an ATM?
  10.  
    In most cases, you may use your EBT card to withdraw cash benefits if enrolled in Temporary Assistance for Needed Families (TANF). However, you may not use EBT cards at ATMs located in casinos, racetracks, liquor stores and other similar locations. In general, you are not allowed to withdraw cash at stores or locations that exclusively sell prohibited items or services. Food-assistance beneficiaries may be only allowed to use their EBT card for approved food purchases.

  11. How do I replace a lost EBT card?
  12.  
    Contact the Department of Economic Security or call the customer service number associated with your card. You can receive one free replacement card each year but will be charged a fee for any additional replacements. You may be required to attend an interview if you need to replace your card too frequently.

  13. How much food can I receive if I need emergency food assistance?
  14.  
    If you are eligible for The Emergency Food Assistance Program (TEFAP), then you can typically receive a three- to five-day supply of food to take home with you. TEFAP services are also available at soup kitchens, which typically allow you to eat one meal per visit.

  15. Are there any special nutrition resources available during a disaster?
  16.  
    When a disaster is declared in Arizona, the Department of Economic Security authorizes the Disaster Nutrition Assistance Program (DNAP). This program is only available after the U.S. president declares a major disaster.

  17. Can I stay anonymous if I want to report public assistance fraud?
  18.  
    You are not required to include your personal information when making a report. Anyone can report fraud, waste and abuse of government-assistance programs. There are no limitations on who is allowed to make an allegation.

  19. What happens if I am investigated for public assistance fraud in Arizona?
  20.  
    If you are named in a fraud allegation, then the Department of Economic Security will send you a letter. Failing to cooperate can lead to your benefits being terminated, even if you are not guilty of fraudulent activity.

  21. Can I receive Temporary Assistance for Needy Families as a tribal member?
  22.  
    When you are a member of a recognized tribe and meet the requirements for Tribal TANF, then you must receive your benefits from that organization. You cannot qualify for regular TANF and Tribal TANF at the same time. However, if you are a tribal member who does not qualify for Tribal TANF, then you may apply for regular cash assistance from TANF instead.

  23. Do the Tribal TANF rules the same as those for regular cash assistance?
  24.  
    If you receive Tribal TANF, then the work requirements, eligibility rules and benefit amounts may differ from the requirements for TANF.

  25. Do you need to be a wartime veteran to receive disability benefits from the VA?
  26.  
    It is not necessary that you served in the military during a war. However, you usually need to have been on active duty to qualify. In some situations, you can still be eligible for benefits if you were injured or obtained certain conditions while training on inactive duty.

  27. How do I report abuse or neglect to Adult Protective Services (APS)?
  28.  
    You can make a report to the Arizona Department of Economic Security online or via phone.

  29. Is there any way to obtain energy assistance on a long-term basis in Arizona?
  30.  
    If you have already applied for the Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) this year, then you must seek assistance from other programs. One such service is the Energy Support Program available from Arizona Public Service offices. This program can offset your utility bills by up to 40 percent, depending on how much electricity your household uses.

  31. Are there any school food assistance programs at schools that do not offer a free breakfast or lunch service?
  32.  
    Yes, certain schools in Arizona participate in the Special Milk Program. If your school district does not offer free and reduced-cost meals at other times of the day, then your children may still be able to receive free or low-cost milk on a daily basis.

  33. Can my children qualify for free school meals at any time or do I need to submit an application at the beginning of the year?
  34.  
    You can sign up for school breakfast or lunch programs at any time during the school year. If you were not eligible when the academic year began, then simply submit an application when you do meet the qualifications. Contact your school administrators for assistance. Download our comprehensive guide to find out more about qualifying for food assistance in schools and at home with food stamps.

  35. Where can I get help applying for public assistance programs in Arizona?
  36.  
    If you would like help applying for nutrition or health services in Arizona, then it is possible to find an assistor. Simply visit the Health-e-Arizona Plus portal and enter your ZIP code to find assistance in your area.

  37. Is there help available when people who are not fluent in English want to apply for public assistance?
  38.  
    Yes. The Department of Economic Security, which oversees nutrition, cash and medical assistance programs in Arizona, provides free language services to applicants who are not proficient in English. Applicants who need help with translation services may contact any Department of Economic Security office in the state.

  39. Are drug tests required for cash assistance, also known as TANF?
  40.  
    When a household applies for cash assistance in Arizona, everyone older than 18 years of age must fill out an Illegal Drug Use Statement form. A test will be required if any answers give the impression that a test is necessary. Household members who need to undergo testing will receive a notification.



What Kind of Assistance Does the Arizona Family Assistance Services Department Offer?

The state of Arizona can assist eligible families with services such as food assistance or temporary cash assistance. To assess your eligibility, you must fill out an application and provide the required documents. To learn all of the details needed to prepare for this application process, download our comprehensive guide today.


Who Is Eligible To Benefit From the Arizona Family Assistance Services?

Eligible low-income families or individuals in Arizona can benefit from programs offered by the Family Assistance Services Department. Temporary financial assistance or Nutrition Assistance services are available to those who qualify upon filing an application. To find out if your family is eligible for these benefits, download our guide now.