The TANF payment level is the amount of money Illinois pays each month. The amount of money depends on the size and type of assistance unit. It also depends on what county you live in.
You can find your payment level by looking at the TANF Program Payment Level Table. The payment table is divided into 3 groups. You can find what group your county belongs to by looking at the information on County Groupings.
If you work and get TANF, you must report your wages and copies of your pay stubs four times a year. DHS will use this information to predict how much of your income will count towards your payment.
Your payment will only change if your family income falls below your payment level. If that happens, you can request an extra payment to bring your total income to your payment level. You must make this request in writing.
DHS will then schedule a meeting, which you must attend. If you do not come to the meeting, your case will be canceled. You can appeal this decision. You should appeal if:
- You did not get notice of the meeting; or
- You had a very good reason to miss the meeting.
DHS will usually hold a meeting instead of going through the appeals process. After the meeting they will usually reopen your case.
If DHS does not give you another meeting, you should reapply for TANF as soon as possible.
If you receive a lump sum payment, it will be counted as income for the month in which you receive it. The following payments are considered lump sum:
- Back pay of Social Security benefits
- Lottery payments
- Money you inherit