Economic Security - Financial Assistance


Qualifying for SAGA cash assistance benefits:

In order to qualify for SAGA cash assistance benefits, individuals must meet the following requirements:

  • Categorical Eligibility: With limited exceptions related to abuse or neglect, unemancipated minors (under age 18) are not eligible for cash assistance. In addition, individuals must qualify as Unemployable, Short-Term Transitional or Long-Term Transitional.
Unemployable: Determined by the Department’s disability examiners to have a physical and/or mental impairment (or combination or impairments) that will prevent employment for six months or more. The medical impairment criteria are identical to those used in the SSI and Medicaid programs, adjusted for duration and severity. Individuals may also qualify as unemployable for the following documentable non-medical reasons: under age 16; over age 65; over age 55 and no work history in the previous 5 years; full-time high school student; needed in the home to care for an incapacitated spouse or child; needed in the home to care for a child under age 2; or, pending receipt of a state or federal means-tested program, e.g., State Supplement or TFA.
Short-Term Transitional: Medical documentation of inability to work for 2 – 6 months. Must have a recent work history in order to qualify under this category (earned at least $500 in each of 3 of the last 5 calendar quarters, or was eligible to collect Unemployment Compensation during the previous six months).
  • Long-Term Transitional: Medical documentation of inability to work for six months or more. No work history required; however, all cases are referred to the Department’s disability examiners for a review of unemployability.
Benefit Levels: Unemployables – up to $245 per month. Short-Term and Long-Term Transitionals – up to $245 per month if applicant has a rental obligation or $62 if living rent-free.
Income Rules: Adjusted income (gross minus certain exclusions and deductions) may not exceed $62 or $245 per month, depending upon the individual’s Unemployable or Transitional status.

Asset Rules: The asset limit is $250 per person, or up to $1,000 for a family of four or more. The department does not count the equity of an automobile as long as it is no more than $4,500. The department counts any amount over $4,500 towards the asset limit.  Home property is not counted.

Citizenship: Applicants must be citizens or qualified aliens. Rules are identical to those of the TFA program. Sponsor’s income is deemed for entrants following December 1997.
Third Party Benefits: Applicants and recipients must pursue all third party benefits (including SSI and TFA) in order to qualify.

Substance Abuse: Active substance abusers (drug and/or alcohol) are required to participate in treatment.

Funeral Allowance: The Department pays for funeral and burial expenses of SAGA, TFA, State Supplement recipients and indigent persons who die without sufficient estate or legally-liable relatives able to pay for the cost of a proper funeral and burial. The Department’s maximum payment is $1,200. This amount is reduced by any liquid assets in the estate (such as money in a bank account), life insurance policies, the amount in any funeral fund, any prepaid funeral contract, and the amount of contributions (regardless of source) that exceed $3,400.
Application must be made within one year of the date of death and may be filed by the funeral director, a family member, or any individual who made the funeral arrangements. Payment for the funerals can only be made to the funeral director, cemetery or crematory. Family members and individuals cannot be reimbursed or receive payment from the Department.

Out-of-State Transportation: The department will provide transportation for individuals receiving public or general assistance to any other state or country if such individual has a relative who agrees to support the individual, or the individual has a job in the other state. 

Qualifying for Temporary Family Assistance - TFA

Who is eligible for TFA?

  • Families with dependent children up to age 18.
  • Families with dependent children who are 18 years of age or older - but the child must be full-time student in high school or vocational school. 
  • Recipients must live in Connecticut, have very little or no income, and be supporting a child or children. In some cases, a pregnant woman may qualify if she has no other means of support and meets other eligibility factors.
  • The child or children in the household must live with a related adult or an adult who has filed for guardianship through probate court. Many TFA-eligible households are grandparents caring for grandchildren.

What are the requirements of TFA?

  • Adult recipients must participate in Jobs First Employment Services activities, coordinated by the Department of Labor.
  • Custodial parents must provide information to help in collecting child support from a parent who is not living in the home. 

What are the income limits to be eligible for TFA?

  • Income limits are extremely long and vary throughout the state. The "Am I Eligible" pre-screening tool at is a helpful information resource.
  • Income of a non-parent relative of guardian does not count when the relative or guardian does not receive TFA for themselves. This is especially relevant when grandparents are caring for grandchildren. 
  • Active TFA-eligible households can earn up to the federal poverty level for their household size and remain eligible.

What are the asset limits to be eligible for TFA?

  • The household asset limit is $3,000.
  • One vehicle is excluded as long as the total value, minus and amount owed, is under $9,500, or used to transport a household member with a disability.
  • The value all of all other vehicles after the first vehicle counts toward the $3,000 asset limit.
  • Home property is not counted.
  • Assets of a non-parent relative or guardian are not counted when the relative or guardian does not receive TFA for themselves. 

For more information on qualifying for TFA and to view all related documents, please follow this link.

Qualifying for State Supplement for the Aged, Blind and Disabled

Covered Groups

  • An Individual must be:
    • Age 65 and older; or
    • Disabled between the age of 18 and 65; or
    • Blind

In addition, the individual must have a source of income such as Social Security or Supplemental Security Income (SSI) in order to qualify for assistance under the State Supplement Program. Those individuals who do not have a source of income are generally assisted by the State of Administered General Assistance program.

Non-Financial Eligibilty

  • An individual must be:
    •  A US citizen or eligible alien
    • A resident of Connecticut
  • An individual must:
    • Provide a Social Security number
    • Cooperate in establishing eligibility
    • Assign claims to possible sources of income or resources
    • Sign a security mortgage against non-home property

A individual must not have transferred assets in order to qualify for assistance.

Financial Eligibility

  • Asset Limit
    • $1,600.00 per individual
    • $2,400.00 per married couple
  • Income Limit
    • Actual rent up to a maximum of: $400.00 (if living alone) $200.00 (if sharing shelter costs)
    • Personal needs allowance of $190.73 for a married individual residing with his or her spouse in non-rated housing or
    • The actual approved rate for a licensed boarding facility (Residential Care Facility)
    • Personal needs allowance of $33.38

Regardless of need, an individual's gross income may not exceed $2,094.00 per month. 

Qualifying for Domestic Violence Cash assistance benefits:

There is no income, asset, immigration/citizenship status restrictions to receive the benefit. However, those who applying must be residents of Connecticut.  Individuals with or without dependent children may qualify. This is generally a one-time benefit and is calculated as the three-month Temporary Family Assistance award for the equivalent family size and issued in one lump sum. The alleged abuser is not included as a member of the household. This program is a state-initiated and state-funded program administered by the Social Work Division. Individuals applying will be required to provide any supporting documentation, including but not limited to:

  • Verification of identity;
  • Primary applicant’s social security number;
  • Verification of relationship between the primary applicant, children and other household members listed on the application;
  • Verification of Connecticut residency;
  • Verification that the primary applicant is a current victim of domestic violence with corroborating evidence in the form of:
    • A police report, protective order or restraining order that was signed and executed within the ninety days (90) immediately preceding the request for assistance; or
    • Documentation from a domestic violence agency that confirms the applicant has experienced a domestic violence event as listed above.