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While we are not affiliated with the government in any way, our private company engaged writers to research the LIHEAP program and compiled a guide and the following answers to frequently asked questions. Our goal is to help you get the benefits that you need by providing useful information on the process.
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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 West Virginia, LIHEAP is administered by the Division of Family Assistance (DFA) under the West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources (DHHR).
Learn more about LIHEAP by reviewing the federal program fact sheet here.
For more information about LIHEAP in West Virginia, click here.
The West Virginia Division of Family Assistanceoversees LIHEAP benefits and provides financial assistance for heating and cooling expenses to qualified households. Financial assistance can include payment for:
For more information about LIHEAP’s heating assistance initiative in West Virginia, see the West Virginia LIHEAP Detailed Model Plan here.
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.
The state of West Virginia defines a “crisis situation” as one where a household:
A “life-threatening crisis situation” also qualifies a household for Crisis Assistance. This occurs when:
For qualifying households, the maximum annual benefit amount for LIHEAP Crisis Assistance is a one-time payment of $1,000.
Learn more about Crisis Assistance on page 12 of the Detailed Model Plan here.
To determine the amount of energy assistance for which you are eligible, the West Virginia Division of Family Assistance will consider:
Also, whether you are eligible for regular LIHEAP payments or Crisis Assistance payments will influence your maximum benefit amount.
As of 2020, the maximum annual benefit amount for heating and cooling in West Virginia is $355 and the minimum annual benefit amount is $120.
To qualify for LIHEAP in West Virginia, you must meet the following requirements:
The West Virginia Division of Family Assistance 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 in West Virginia 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:
Eligible households can only apply for LIHEAP heating assistance from October 1 until March 31 each year. Likewise, eligible households can only apply for LIHEAP cooling assistance from May 1 until September 30 each year. LIHEAP applications cannot be submitted year-round.
To apply for LIHEAP in West Virginia, complete the following three steps:
Learn what documents and information you need to complete the process here.
To apply online, complete the digital application on the West Virginia Benefits Portal here.
To apply by mail or in person, find your nearest Department of Health and Human Resources (DHHR) office and contact information here.
Access the West Virginia LIHEAP application here.
Note that applications for Crisis Assistance, for households that meet the state definition of a crisis, can be submitted year-round.
If you have questions about the application process or require assistance, contact your nearest Department of Health and Human Resources (DHHR) office. Find your nearest DHHR office here.
When applying for West Virginia LIHEAP benefits, you will need to provide:
The state will need the following documents and information to confirm your eligibility for LIHEAP benefits:
Learn more about the documentation needed during the LIHEAP application process here.
You can call the Department of Health and Human Resources office where you applied directly to check your application status.
Click here to find your local office and contact information.
The West Virginia Division of Family Assistance will notify you within 30 days of receiving your application if you are approved to receive benefits. All LIHEAP payments are made to the heating or energy provider directly. Benefit payments will not be sent to you.
If you are denied West Virginia LIHEAP benefits, you may request a hearing to appeal the decision by writing a statement to your local Department of Health and Human Resources (DHHR) office where you applied within 60 days of when you received the denial. Find your nearest local DHHR office here.
If the DHHR representative cannot resolve the dispute, you can request a hearing with the Department of Health and Human Resources. To begin this process, access the Fair Hearing Rights and Request Form here and mail it to:
West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources
Office of Inspector General
Board of Review
203 East Third Avenue
Williamson, WV 25661
Once the Department of Health and Human Resources receives the appeal, they will set up a hearing and notify you of the date, time and location.
If you have questions about the appeal process, contact DHHR client services at (800) 642-8589.
If you have questions about LIHEAP benefits in West Virginia or require further assistance, contact your local Department of Health and Human Resources office. Find your nearest Department of Health and Human Resources (DHHR) office and contact information here.
You can also contact DHHR client services at (800) 642-8589.
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.