You can’t get TANF for more than 60 months, total. This is true even if you received TANF benefits in another state.
A month does not count towards the 60 if you:
- Work at least 30 hours per week and still qualify for cash assistance (35 hours for two-parent families);
- Are single a parent and attend a postsecondary education program full time and maintain a cumulative 2.5-grade point average;
- Provide constant in-home care for a medically dependent child under 21;
- Provide care for a disabled child or spouse; or
- Are approved for a Domestic Violence Exclusion.
Exceptions to the 60-month limit
Some families can get TANF for more than 60 months. If you have reached the 60-month limit, but you have a minor child who is a parent, your child can get TANF.
If your minor child who is a parent goes to live with another relative, that relative may receive TANF for your child. The relative will have the same 60-month limit on TANF benefits.
To get the exception, you and your family must meet one or more of the following:
- You are eligible for and have applied for SSI or disability;
- You have a medical condition that prevents full-time employment;
- You are receiving services through a program that prevents full-time work (includes DCFS, domestic violence, homeless services, mental health, substance abuse, and vocational rehabilitation programs);
- You are enrolled in an approved education or training program that will end within 6 months of time running out;
- You have a family care barrier; or
- Your child is approved for Home and Community-based Care waiver.
If there are at least 2 adults, only one has to meet an exception for the whole family to get TANF.
Updated: September 2017