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Additional Requirements (AR)

Authored By: Northwest Justice Project LSC Funded
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If you qualify for Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF), State Financial Assistance (SFA), or a Refugee Cash Assistance (RCA) welfare grant through DSHS and you have an emergency, you may be eligible to get "Additional Requirements (AR).” AR is a once-a-year cash grant for emergency needs. #7108EN


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What is Additional Requirements (AR)? – WAC 388-436-0002

It is a once-a-year cash grant for emergency needs. DSHS gives you an extra payment (AR) to help you get or keep safe housing or utilities. This payment is the least amount that will get you through the emergency. 

Am I eligible for AR

Yes, if:

  • You are eligible for or already get Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF), State Family Assistance (SFA), or Refugee Cash Assistance (RCA).

  • You got TANF in another state and moved to Washington.  You are eligible for AR in the same month you moved here.

  • You have not already gotten AR.

*If you do not get or do not want to get TANF, SFA, or RCA, you cannot get AR.

Can AR cover my emergency needs for rent, security deposits, mortgage payments, taxes or fees?

Yes, to

  • Prevent eviction or foreclosure

  • Get new housing or housing subsidies, if you are fleeing domestic violence or are homeless

Can AR cover repairs for damages or defects to my home?

Yes, if they cause a risk to health or safety.  If you rent, DSHS will help only after you have written the landlord asking for the repairs.  (See Tenants: If You Need Repairs)  If it would cost less to move, DSHS will pay for that instead of repairs.

Can AR help with utilities?

Yes, for repairs, deposits, fees and services needed for electricity, water, sewer, and fuel for heating or cooking.  DSHS will pay for basic local phone service if needed for your basic health and safety.

When will DSHS help?

You must have good reason for not meeting your housing or utility needs. This can include:

  • An emergency, such as injury or illness

  • You had basic or emergency expenses for such items as shelter, food clothing, medical care necessary for work or to cure pain, emergency childcare, or other reasonable and vital expenses

  • You were involved in a disaster such as theft, house fire, flood, severe weather, accident, or medical emergency

  •  Extra, short-term expenses caused by homelessness, domestic violence, or other situations that put your family's health and safety at risk

  • DSHS has lowered or ended your family's cash grant due to expected or budgeted income you actually cannot use

How much can I get?

  • You can get up to $750 AR benefits in a twelve-month period.

  • DSHS will pay the least amount that will get you through the emergency.

Can I ever get more than $750?

Maybe. You might be able to get more if your housing or utility emergency is about to cause a health and/or safety risk. 

Will DSHS pay me directly?

No.  DSHS pays AR benefits to a third party. Examples:

  • utility company

  • mortgage company

  • landlord

What if DSHS denies my application for AR?

You can appeal.  You must ask for an “administrative hearing” within ninety days of the denial. 

How do I ask for an administrative hearing?

Do both of these:

  • Call your worker or the administrative hearing coordinator at the DSHS office to ask for it. 

  • Put your hearing request in writing.  Drop it off at the DSHS office or mail to Office of Administrative Hearings, P.O. Box 42489, Olympia, WA 98504. 

What if I need the hearing right away?

If it is an emergency, call the Office of Administrative Hearings at (360) 664-8717 or 1-800-583-8271. Ask them to schedule your hearing as soon as possible (an “expedited” hearing).

Would DSHS reconsider its decision without a hearing?     

Maybe. Talk to a supervisor or the administrator of the DSHS office if your worker says DSHS cannot help you.  They might change the caseworker's decision. Do not withdraw (take back) your administrative hearing request until you get written notice of the award.

Do I have to represent myself at the hearing?

Maybe not.  You can have someone represent you.  Representing Yourself at an Administrative Hearing has more info.  Call CLEAR at 1-888-201-1014.

Does DSHS have any other programs providing emergency cash assistance?


  • Diversion Cash Assistance (DCA) – if you choose not to apply for TANF. 

  • Consolidated Emergency Assistance (CEAP) – if you are not eligible for TANF.

Our publications on DCA and CEAP have more info. 


This publication provides general information concerning your rights and responsibilities. It is not intended as a substitute for specific legal advice.
This information is current as of February 2019.

© 2019 Northwest Justice Project. 1-888-201-1014.
(Permission for copying and distribution granted to the Alliance for Equal Justice and individuals for non-commercial use only.)


Last Review and Update: Feb 21, 2019