This site is privately owned and is not affiliated with any government agency. Learn more here

LIHEAP FAQ Sheets

Table of Contents 

What Is the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program?

The Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP) provides assistance for energy costs to low-income households. LIHEAP is a federal program that is administered by individual states, territories, and tribes. In American Samoa, LIHEAP is administered by the Territorial Energy Office of American Samoa.

Learn more about LIHEAP by reviewing the federal program fact sheet here.

For more information about LIHEAP in American Samoa, see the American Samoa LIHEAP Detailed Model Plan here.

What Does LIHEAP Cover in American Samoa?

The Territorial Energy Office of American Samoa oversees LIHEAP benefits and provides financial assistance for cooling expenses to qualified households. Financial assistance can include payment for:

  • Past-due utility bills
  • Deliverable fuel (propane and wood)
  • Disconnection/reconnection fees
  • Repairs and replacements of worn parts on heating units
  • Home weatherization

For more information about LIHEAP’s cooling assistance initiative in American Samoa, see the American Samoa LIHEAP Detailed Model Plan here.

American Samoa’s LIHEAP program does not provide financial compensation for heating expenses. However, it does assist with cooling emergencies if applicants qualify for Crisis Assistance.

About LIHEAP Crisis Assistance

LIHEAP Crisis Assistance, like standard LIHEAP benefits, is a cash grant provided to the utility companies of eligible individuals in certain situations.

If your household meets all the eligibility requirements above and has an energy-related crisis, you may qualify for LIHEAP Crisis Assistance.

American Samoa defines a “crisis situation” as one where a household:

  • Is in danger of having their utilities disconnected.
  • Has already had their utilities disconnected by their service provider.
  • Is affected by weather, natural and man-made disasters.
  • Has a priority population and is affected by high temperatures.

A “life-threatening crisis situation” also qualifies a household for Crisis Assistance. This occurs when:

  • A member of the household is a medical or health risk because of energy loss.
  • A member of the household has a condition that requires the use of a medical device/medication that requires energy.

For qualifying households, the maximum annual benefit amount for LIHEAP Crisis Assistance is a one-time payment of $800.

Learn more about Crisis Assistance on page 12 of the Detailed Model Plan here.

How Much Assistance Does LIHEAP Provide in American Samoa?

To determine the amount of energy assistance for which you are eligible, the Territorial Energy Office will consider:

  1. Your household size and income for the month prior to your application
  2. The fuel type you need (electricity, propane, natural gas, or heating oil)

Also, whether you are eligible for regular LIHEAP payments or Crisis Assistance payments will influence your maximum benefit amount.

As of 2022, the maximum annual benefit amount for cooling assistance in American Samoa is $65 and the minimum annual benefit amount is $25.

However, depending on the income of a household, they may be able to receive between $20 and $150 of assistance. Furthermore, applicants on the cash power system can receive up to $25 per month in assistance. Applicants will need to purchase units if they do not use up their assistance money in that month.

How to Qualify for LIHEAP in American Samoa

To qualify for LIHEAP in American Samoa, you must meet the following requirements:

  • Be a resident of American Samoa
  • At least one household member must be a U.S. citizen or a lawful permanent resident
  • Have an out-of-pocket energy expense from an account opened in the name of the head of the household or their spouse
  • Have an annual income that is less than the LIHEAP income limit for your household size, which is no more than 150 percent of the established Federal Poverty Level.

The American Samoa Territorial Energy Office prioritizes households with elderly, disabled or young members. Elderly is considered 60 years or older, and young is considered five years old or younger.

Learn more about the LIHEAP financial eligibility requirements here.

If you or a member of your family participates in the benefit programs below, then you may automatically be eligible for LIHEAP based on your income:

  • Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP). Learn more here.
  • Supplemental Security Income (SSI). Learn more here.

How to Apply for LIHEAP in American Samoa

Eligible households can apply for LIHEAP assistance year-round.

To apply for LIHEAP in American Samoa, complete the following three steps:

  1. Gather the documentation and information you will need for the application.

Learn what documents and information you need to complete the process in the American Samoa LIHEAP Detailed Model Plan here.

  1. Choose how you are going to apply, whether by phone or in person. 

Contact the Territorial Energy Office at (684) 699-1101 or (684) 699-1102.

  1. Submit the LIHEAP application and other required documents.

Access the American Samoa LIHEAP application through the Territorial Energy Office.

Note that applications for Crisis Assistance, for households that meet the definition of a crisis, can be submitted year-round.

If you have questions about the application process or require assistance, contact the Territorial Energy Office at (684) 699-1101 or (684) 699-1102.

What You Will Need to Apply

When applying for American Samoa LIHEAP benefits, you will need to provide:

  • Personal and financial information about yourself and the members of your household
  • Details about your home and its heating

The department will need the following documents and information to confirm your eligibility for LIHEAP benefits:

  • Names, birth dates and Social Security Numbers for all household members
  • Utility bill information (vendor name and account number)
  • Residence information (landlord’s name, address and phone number, if renting)
  • Income verification for the last three months (pay stubs)

Learn more about the documentation needed during the LIHEAP application process at the American Samoa LIHEAP Detailed Model Plan here.

How to Check Your Application Status

You can call the Territorial Energy Office at (684) 699-1101 or (684) 699-1102 to check your application status.

What Happens After You Apply for LIHEAP in American Samoa?

The American Samoa Territorial Energy Office will notify you soon after of receiving your application if you are approved to receive benefits. Applicants eligible for Crisis Assistance will receive notification within 18 to 48 hours. All LIHEAP payments are made to the heating or energy provider directly. Benefit payments will not be sent to you.

How to Appeal a Denial of Benefits

If you are denied American Samoa LIHEAP benefits, you may request a hearing to appeal the decision by contacting the Territorial Energy Office.

Once the Territorial Energy Office receives the appeal, they will set up a hearing and notify you of the date, time and location within 24 hours.

If you have questions about the appeal process, contact the Territorial Energy Office at (684) 699-1101 or (684) 699-1102.

Need More Help?

If you have questions about LIHEAP benefits in American Samoa or require further assistance, call the Territorial Energy Office at (684) 699-1101 or (684) 699-1102.

You can also contact the Territorial Energy Office in person or by mail at:
LIHEAP Coordinator
Territorial Energy Office
Samoa Energy House – Tafuna
Pago Pago, American Samoa 96799

View or Download Our Free Guide

While we are not affiliated with the government in any way, our private company engaged writers to research the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program and compiled a guide that we believe is simple to use and easy to understand. Our goal is to help you get the benefits that you need by providing detailed information on the process.

Our free LIHEAP Guide is filled with helpful information about how to apply for LIHEAP, program eligibility and how to get in touch with local offices. You can view or download our free guide here.