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DHS

 


The DHS ERAP application portal is open and accepting applications. The portal will remain open until 8,500 applications are receivedLearn more
 

Want to help? Here is how. Learn more

 

There is a Temporary Local Benefit to households receiving the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) for the period January 1, 2024, through September 30, 2024. Learn more

 

List Your Units Here Today! Read more
 

 

 

ESA Frequently Asked Questions

Which Service Center should I go to for help? Do I need to go to my assigned Service Center to get help?

Customers are welcome to visit any of the five DHS/ESA Decentralized Service Centers. For your convenience, a list of the service center locations, go there or you are welcome to call the DHS Call Center at (202) 727-5355 to inquire about the locations nearest you. A consumer does not have to report to their assigned Service Center to receive any services from the agency. Consumers should be advised that the agency has established the “No Wrong Door” policy to accommodate any need for services regardless of their residential location throughout the city. Consumers who are directed to leave to go to their “assigned” service center should ask to speak with the Front Desk Supervisor or Center Manager.

Which applications do I need to fill out in order to get Medicaid/QMB/Food Stamp/ TANF benefits?

If a consumer wishes to apply for SNAP, TANF, Non-MAGI, (e.g., SSI recipients, current and former Foster Care youth, Aged, Disabled), The Home and Community Based Waiver, Katie Beckett, DC Healthcare Alliance, and Immigrant Children’s Program they will be issued a Combined Application for benefits. With the new Federal requirements mandated by the Affordable Health Care Act of 2010, we are currently using program-specific applications for the requested services indicated below.

Program Type Application Type
Qualified Medicare Beneficiary Combined Application
Burial Burial Assistance
Long Term Care Long Term Care
MAGI Medicaid, e.g. (parents and caretaker relatives, children to age 21, and pregnant women) Combined Application


 

I have applied for Medicaid/SNAP/TANF benefits but I have not heard anything about the status of my application
(or when I/visited DHS/ESA, I was told that there is no record of my application) what should I do?

After submitting an application, consumers will receive a decision about Medical Assistance within 45 days (or 90 days if DHS must determine if the consumer is disabled). If the consumer needs to provide additional information, they will receive a 10 and 30-day reminder to submit the needed information.

A consumer’s application for SNAP can be processed separately from the request for other benefits. Consumers can receive Expedited SNAP within seven (7) days if they are eligible. If approved for Expedited, the consumer will receive an initial notice that identifies any pending information needed for ongoing benefits. Consumers will receive a final decision about their SNAP eligibility within 30 days.

TANF Rules require that customers complete an orientation and assessment conducted by the Office of Work Opportunity. During the interview, the worker will discuss this requirement and offer a referral. Upon providing all of the requested information, a decision for a TANF application will be made within 45 days.

If a consumer is advised that his/her application cannot be located, he/she should ask to speak to the Front Desk supervisor. If a consumer believes his/her application was denied by DHS improperly, then they can request a Fair Hearing. Call (202) 698-4650 to find out more.

No one at this Service Center speaks my language. Can I still apply here?

In accordance with the DC Human Rights Act of 1977, as amended, DC Official Code § 2-1401.01 et seq., (Act) the District of Columbia does not discriminate on the basis of actual or perceived: race, color, religion, national origin, sex, age, marital status, gender identity or expression, personal appearance, sexual orientation, familial status, family responsibilities, matriculation, political affiliation, genetic information, disability, source of income, status as a victim of an intra-family offense, and place of residence or business.

Some Centers are staffed with Bi-Lingual staff. However, all Service Centers are equipped with staff trained to use the Language Line. On the Combined Benefit Application as well as at the Front Desk are language bulletins common to the District of Columbia. The consumer should advise the agency staff of his/her language preference and an interpreter will be contacted at no charge to the consumer. Consumers also have the right to provide their own interpreters. However, they will be asked to complete a waiver noting so.

Can I apply for Medicaid at a DHS/ESA Center?

Yes, Service Centers are still receiving applications for Medical Assistance. You may submit your application to any DHS/ESA Service Center near you. In addition, consumers should be advised that they can also apply for Medicaid online at the DC HealthLink website by phone at (202) 727-5355, by email at [email protected], or by mail. Mailed applications should be sent to:

Economic Security Administration
Case Record Management Unit
P.O. Box 91560
Washington, DC 20090

Can I apply for Medicaid only for my children?

Yes, a parent may apply for his/her children only. However, some factors common to the parent (including income and resources) will be used to determine eligibility for the children.

DHS/ESA told me that they did not get a document that I brought to the Service Center/mailed/emailed. What should I do?

Documents received via email or in person are logged in daily. If a consumer mails the document they should be sure to clearly write their name or case number and date of birth on the submitted document to avoid processing delays.  If the customer receives notification that a document has not been received, he/she should be advised to complete an inquiry with the Call Center at (202) 727-5355.

I received a notice stating that I needed to come to a Service Center for an in-person interview, but my disabilities prevent me from doing this. What should I do?

Customers who are faced with health challenges have several options to continue their services.  Consumers may submit a letter in writing authorizing a PROXY or authorized representative to complete their case actions for them.  Consumers may also request a telephone interview and the agency can mail or FAX the documents to them.  Under certain circumstances, the Agency may be able to send a Social Service Representative to receive the information for the customer.

I am applying for Medicaid, but I have unpaid medical bills for the last three months. What should I do?

Customers who are faced with health challenges have several options to continue their services. Consumers may submit a letter in writing authorizing a PROXY or authorized representative to complete their case actions for them. Consumers may also request a telephone interview and the agency can mail or FAX the documents to them.

I am applying for Medicaid, but I have unpaid medical bills for the last three months. What should I do?

On the Combined application, there is a section that states, “Did anyone have any medical bills in the last three months?” This applies to Retroactive, (Retro), Coverage. In the DC Health Link application, a customer may receive Retro Coverage by completing the Application for Retroactive Medicaid Coverage and submitting it to the agency. Consumers can also submit a reimbursement claim for any expenses they have incurred during the time they were eligible. SNAP Policy Quick-Reference Guide 

The SNAP policy quick-reference guide will help you understand the potential impact of a new cash or in-kind benefit on a household’s SNAP benefits.