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How to Apply for Welfare Benefits in Hawaii

by Raene Kaleinani

Applying for welfare benefits in Hawaii is open to anyone who is a Hawaii resident and United States citizen or national. You need to complete a detailed application with the State of Hawaii Department of Human Services (DHS) Benefit Employment & Support Services Division. The application is a declaration of household size, U.S. citizenship, household income and assets. The program is designed to support individuals and families who are in need of temporary money, food stamp and medical insurance assistance while partaking in active initiatives towards developing independence in becoming self-sufficient.

Get Application

Obtain an application for benefits at one of the various district offices. Fill out the application at the district office or from home and mail it to the appropriate office location. The Hawaii Department of Health website also offer applications to print and a list of office locations for mailing.

After you submit the completed application, you will receive an appointment letter stating the date and time for an intake interview with an eligibility worker. You must attend your appointment or your application for financial assistance will be denied. Immediately contact the eligibility worker assigned to your case if an emergency arises and your appointment needs to be rescheduled.

Bring the required documents that identifies you and each household member for whom you are requesting benefits on your appointment date. Acceptable forms of identification include a birth certificate, hospital birth record, immigration certificate, adoption certificate, driver's license or Hawaii-issued state identification card. Also bring your original Social Security card to the appointment.

Bring proof of monthly income that your household generates or receives. This includes pay stubs, business invoices, interest income, Social Security income, disability income, workman's compensation, unemployment benefits, alimony, child support, money gifts, inheritance and any other proof of income not previously mentioned.

Provide proof of assets you and your household members own, such as savings and checking accounts, investment accounts, property titles and personal and recreational vehicle titles.

Items you will need
  • Pen
  • Telephone
  • Internet access (option)
  • Document envelope
  • Postage

Tip

  • Contact your eligibility worker if you need to reschedule your appointment or need clarification on documents to bring for your interview

Warning

  • Do NOT intentionally hide information to collect benefits. The penalty of fraud is greater than the benefits itself. Fraud judgments are subject repayment of benefits, fines, imprisonment and a lifetime criminal record.

About the Author

Raene Kaleinani began writing professionally in 2009. She has also been writing numerous poems and short stories seeded within her Hawaiian culture since 1999. Kaleinani has earned degrees in English and Hawaiian cultural studies from the University of Hawaii.