Virginia, VA

A significant challenge faced by single mothers is the lack of financial resources to meet the basic needs of their families. Recognizing this, Virginia offers help to single mothers who carry the sole burden of providing for their children.

Virginia Earned Income Credit (EIC) #

The state of Virginia joins 31 other states and the District of Columbia in implementing a version of the Earned Income Credit or EIC, which is modeled after the federal guidelines and eligibility rules.

Virginia’s EIC lets working families claim a modest credit — one-fifth of the amount of the federal credit, against the state income taxes they owe. The less they owe and the more they work, the more money they can keep for their family.

However, unlike the federal EITC and similar credits in many other states, Virginia’s EIC is non-refundable. In other words, the credit can only be used to offset any taxes you owe but you’ll not receive the difference in tax refund.

Virginia Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) #

Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) is a temporary cash assistance program for very low income families in Virginia. Its primary aim is to assist families near the poverty level to become self-sufficient.

As a condition of eligibility, active participation in VIEW – the Virginia Initiative for Employment not Welfare, is required for most people on TANF — for as long as they’re collecting TANF benefits.

How do I apply for TANF in Virginia?

You may apply for TANF in person at your local DSS office or electronically through CommonHelp — Virginia’s online application for public assistance, including SNAP.

Virginia Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) #

Virginia SNAP helps low-income people and families in Virginia with cash assistance to buy the food they need for a nutritionally adequate diet.

Eligible SNAP participants are issued a Virginia EBT Card used to make food purchases at grocery stores and supermarkets, in lieu of paper food stamp coupons.

Unless otherwise exempt, you may be subject to a work requirement in order to receive SNAP. This requirement would limit the number of months for which you could receive SNAP to three months in a 36 month period.

What is the income limit for food stamps in VA?

A family of three with a gross monthly income of $2,495 qualifies for SNAP benefits worth $416 per month. 1

Virginia Special Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) #

WIC is a federally funded program that provides FREE nutritious foods and supplement diets for eligible pregnant women, postpartum and breastfeeding women, infants and children under age five who meet the income guidelines.

To be eligible, you must be a resident of the state of Virginia with income not exceeding 185% of the federal poverty guidelines; and be individually determined by a health professional to be at nutrition risk.

How do I apply for WIC in Virginia?

Application for WIC benefits can be made through the Virginia Department of Social Services or via myVAWIC — the official portal to pre-screen and apply for Virginia WIC.

Virginia Medicaid #

Medicaid serves needy individuals and families in Virginia who lack adequate resources to pay for medical care. Eligible applicants include children under the age of 19, disabled adults, seniors as well as pregnant women.

Although Virginia has just expanded Medicaid coverage, eligibility for non-disabled adults now includes parents with incomes up to 138% of poverty, or about $31,780 a year for a single mother of two.

Virginia is also expanding its Medicaid program to provide a comprehensive dental benefit to poor adults, for the first time. The benefit expansion includes checkups three times a year to prevent oral disease.

How do I apply for Virginia Medicaid?

Coverage starts Jan. 1. You may apply or check your eligibility at Cover Virginia or by calling 1-855-242-8282 and speak to a person who can answer your questions.

Family Access to Medical Insurance Security (FAMIS) #

FAMIS is Virginia’s health insurance program for children under age 19. It provides access to quality health services for uninsured children in families that earn too much for Medicaid.

FAMIS Plus is Virginia’s name for children’s Medicaid that covers children in families with lower or no income. FAMIS MOMS will cover uninsured pregnant women of any age with incomes up to 205% of the poverty level.

FAMIS coverage includes:

  • Doctor visits
  • Prescription medicines
  • Hospital care
  • Dental care
  • Mental Health services
  • Eyeglasses
  • Immunizations
  • Regular check-ups — and more

There are no enrollment costs or monthly premiums for FAMIS. For some services, you will have to pay a co-payment. Most co-payments are just $2 or $5.

What does FAMIS MOMS cover?

FAMIS MOMS provides comprehensive health care benefits during your pregnancy and for two months following your baby’s birth as well as dental benefits during your pregnancy coverage.

Virginia Child Care Subsidy Program #

Child Care Subsidy Program provides financial assistance to the neediest families in Virginia to help pay for the cost of child care so they can work or attend education or training programs.

Recipients of TANF are considered income eligible for child care subsidy. Because funding is limited, you may be placed on a waiting list.

How do I apply for child care assistance in Virginia?

To screen for eligibility or apply online, visit CommonHelp — the official website to apply for public assistance in Virginia such as Medicaid, SNAP, TANF, energy and child care assistance.

Virginia Head Start #

Virginia Head Start serves pre-school children ages 3 to 5 from families living at or below the federal poverty level; providing comprehensive educational, health, nutritional, social services, and parent involvement opportunities.

Children in foster care, homeless children, and children from families receiving public assistance are automatically eligible for Head Start, regardless of income.

Home-based services to families and child care for infants and toddlers are also available through Early Head Start. To register your child, contact the Head Start Center closet to your home.

Virginia Unemployment Insurance #

Unemployment insurance (UI) provides temporary replacement of lost wages to workers unemployed through no fault of their own — for up to 26 weeks.

Part of the requirement for continuing to receive a weekly unemployment check is that you must be actively seek a job until you find one. Failure to do so will result in denial of benefits.

How do I file my weekly unemployment claim in Virginia?

If you’re a new claimant, call 1-866-832-2363 to file a new claim by telephone, otherwise call 1-800-897-5630 for your weekly benefits. Alternatively, you may file electronically over the internet.

Virginia Tuition Assistance Grant (VTAG) #

Tuition Assistance Grant Program (VTAG) is designed to assist Virginia residents who attend accredited private, nonprofit colleges and universities in Virginia.

The award amount is based on the number of eligible students and the availability of funds. Based on recent funding thresholds, the maximum award for undergraduates is $4,500 and $2,250 for graduates.

To be considered for VTAG, you must file a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) on time. Application are due July 31 each year but no later than December 1.

  1. Virginia DSS, SNAP Income Eligibility Limits
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