How to Apply for Cash Assistance in California


Applying for cash assistance in California can be a bit challenging if you are unprepared. There is a lot of paperwork and verifications to complete before any aid is given. If you have everything you need before you apply for assistance, it will make the process go smoother and faster so you can receive the help you need.

Things You'll Need

  • California driver's license or other I.D.
  • Pen

Submitting your Application

  • Find the Department of Social Services office location nearest to you within your county. Go there to pick up an application for cash assistance. You can fill out the application in the office if you have time, or take it home to complete.

  • Fill out the application for cash assistance. You will be required to provide information such as how many children you have, how much money you currently make, the last job you held and how much you pay in rent each month.

  • Submit your application. When you submit your application, you will be required to see an eligibility technician who will read over and asses the information you put down. He or she will need verifications on anything you have written in your application.

  • Provide correct verifications. If you do not have the proper verifications, your application process can be severely delayed. If you fail to provide the verifications in a timely manner, your application could be denied. You will need to provide verifications such as I.D., Social Security cards for yourself and any children, birth certificates and bank statements.

  • Get your fingerprints taken; this is a requirement for all persons going on cash assistance. This will usually be done the day you submit your application, or you may have to make an appointment to return depending on your county of residence.

  • Wait on a response from your eligibility technician. Some eligibility technicians may approve your case the day you submit your application, and others may not. Give them at least 30 days to review your application.

Tips & Warnings

  • You could be at the office for a long time-bring a snack and/or drink with you
  • GO
  • Make sure all birth certificates and other important documents are certified copies, or the office will not accept them.
  • If your application gets denied and you believe it is unfair, speak up. Sometimes it may be due to a small error on the application.


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