Temporary Assistance to Needy Families (TANF) for Grandparents Raising Grandchildren

Authored By: Georgia Legal Services Program® LSC Funded
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TANF for Grandparents Raising Grandchildren: $50 Supplement and Emergency Cash Grant


The following content is from the brochure, "TANF for Grandparents Raising Grandchildren," prepared by Georiga Legal Services Program.


I am a grandparent raising my grandchild, can TANF help me?

Maybe. TANF stands for “Temporary Assistance to Needy Families.” If you meet certain requirements, you may be able to get the fifty dollar ($50) Monthly Subsidy Payment (MSP) or the Crisis Intervention Services Payment (CRISP). You may also be able to get other types of TANF. This brochure, however, is only about MSP and CRISP.


What is MSP?

MSP is cash assistance given to needy families with minor children. You may apply for MSP even if you are already receiving another form of TANF.


Where do I apply for the MSP cash assistance?

Apply at the Division of Family and Children Services (DFCS). If possible, you should keep a copy of your application for your records.


How much money would I receive with the MSP cash assistance?

DFCS provides fifty dollars ($50) per month, per child.


How do I use the MSP cash assistance?

Use the MSP cash assistance for:

1.     shelter expenses (rent, mortgage and utilities);

2.     child care fees;

3.     clothing;

4.     bedding, furniture and supplies for the grandchild;

5.     actions for custody (when all parties agree), where expenses include mediation, Guardian Ad Litem (GAL), court costs, and attorney fees;

6.     gas, bus vouchers and/or car repairs; and,

7.     counseling for the grandparents and grandchildren. 

Remember, the above list does not include everything. You may have other uses for the MSP that are not listed above. DFCS will not monitor how you spend the MSP


What is CRISP?

CRISP is an emergency cash grant. It is a one time only cash payment based upon need. 


What emergencies are covered by CRISP?

Emergencies include (but are not limited to): rent, utility connections, court expenses for custody, school and education expenses, and furniture and bedding


Where do I apply for CRISP?



How much money would I receive with CRISP?

The payment is equal to up to three (3) times the maximum TANF benefit.


Who can apply for MSP and CRISP?

MSP and CRISP are available to a grandparent who:

1.     is a caretaker of his/her grandchild;

2.     is sixty (60) years of age and older, or any age and is disabled;

3.     is not participating in an existing foster care program and is not receiving per diem payments; and,

4.     has a household income of less than 160% of the federal poverty level. 


What other services are available when I apply for MSP and CRISP?

DFCS can provide childcare services through the Child and Parent Services Program (CAPS).


What else should I know about MSP?

MSP may affect your food stamp benefits. The caseworker must discuss this with you. 


How long will it take DFCS to process my application for MSP cash assistance?

DFCS has forty-five (45) days from the date that your request was received in their office in person or in writing.  


How long will it take DFCS to make a decision on my application for CRISP?

DFCS has ten (10) days from the date your request is received in their office in person or in writing to make a decision on your application. 


What else should I know about my application for CRISP?

If your TANF case is still pending and DFCS considers that your family may be eligible, then the emergency cash grant should be approved within ten (10) days.


What if DFCS denies my application?

If DFCS denies your application, you may appeal the denial. Ask for a hearing in writing within thirty (30) days from the mailing date of the denial decision. Always keep the envelope to prove the date that the letter was mailed.


What if I am currently receiving TANF and DFCS wants to stop or to change how much I receive?

To continue benefits, ask for a hearing at least ten (10) days from the date of mailing of the decision to keep benefits coming. Always keep the envelope to prove the date that the letter was mailed.


Act immediately if you have received papers about your claim.  Deadlines may apply.

Please see a lawyer about your case. 

The views in this document are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the official position or policies of the Georgia Department of Human Resources. The information in this brochure is intended only as information; it is not legal advice. The information does not create an attorney-client relationship. For specific legal advice, contact an attorney licensed in the appropriate state and do not rely upon this information. This brochure was created by the Georgia Legal Services Program under a grant from the Georgia Department of Human Resources, Division of Aging Services.


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Last Review and Update: Jun 18, 2011