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General Assistance

IMPORTANT NOTICE:

Due to COVID-19, Alameda County Social Services Agency (ACSSA) has implemented temporary changes to the General Assistance (GA) Program. See changes below.

  • Lobbies in all SSA offices are offering limited in-person services to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Notices for limited in-person services are included in English, Spanish, Chinese, Farsi/Dari, Vietnamese, Tagalog, Khmer.

  • The GA face-to-face interview has been waived until further notice. Interviews will be conducted over the phone.

  • The GA application is available here. GA applicants may complete the application and submit it by U.S. mail at the following address: P.O. Box 12941, Oakland, CA 94604 or fax at the following number: 510 670-5095.

In the event a GA applicant does not have access to email, phone and/or cannot send via U.S. mail, they can drop off completed GA applications in the secure lobby drop box between the hours of 8:30am and 5:00pm. Applicants may also pick up applications for all aid programs in the designated area in the lobby as they remain available.

For more COVID-19 related information for all programs, please see our COVID-19 resource page.

Attention: All Alameda County General Assistance Recipients

In response to COVID-19 (Coronavirus), if your General Assistance (GA) Semi-Annual Report (SAR 7) or annual renewal was due in March, or will be due in April or May 2020, you do not have to turn in the reports or complete your interview for these months. For more information, including ways to report a loss of income, click .

General Assistance (GA) provides cash aid to indigent adults and emancipated minors who are legal residents of Alameda County and who have no other means of support. It is a state-mandated program that is locally administered and funded by the County of Alameda.

The maximum cash grant for a single person on GA is $336 per month. GA recipients who are 18 to 21 years old, pregnant, disabled or 65 and older may also be eligible for Medi-Cal benefits. If you are not eligible for Medi-Cal, you can receive medical treatment at the county clinics and hospitals. Many GA recipients are also eligible for Food Stamp benefits of up to $200 per month for a single person.

All GA benefits are considered a loan to the individual receiving aid. GA recipients must sign a reimbursement agreement as a condition of eligibility. Employable recipients may participate in employment service activities. GA recipients who are permanently disabled and/or 62 years and older are required to apply for Social Security benefits or Supplemental Security Insurance (SSI) through the Social Security Administration.

Legal Non-Citizens 65 years and older who meet certain residency requirements must apply for benefits through the Cash Assistance Program for Immigrants (CAPI).

Applicants and recipients may have up to $1,000 in personal property. The cash surrender value on a life insurance policy is counted as part of the personal property limit for an individual.

To apply for general assistance, please visit the Workforce and Benefits Administration public contact office nearest you.

Eligibility

All GA benefits are considered a loan to the individual receiving aid. GA recipients must sign a reimbursement agreement as a condition of eligibility. Employable recipients may participate in employment service activities.

Recipients who are unemployable and/or 65 years and older who appear eligible for Supplemental Security Insurance (SSI) are required to apply for these benefits through the Social Security Administration.

Legal Non-Citizens 65 years and older who meet certain residency requirements must apply for benefits through the Cash Assistance Program for Immigrants (CAPI).

Applicants and recipients may have up to $1,000 in personal property. The cash surrender value on a life insurance policy is counted as part of the personal property limit for an individual.

New General Assistance (GA) Program Rules

Time Limits

Individuals determined to be employable will only be eligible for cash aid for 3 full months in any 12-month period. This rule will apply whether aid was paid for 3 continuous months, or if t was a break in aid between months in any 12-month period.

EXCEPTIONS TO THE NEW PROGRAM RULES:

The exceptions to the time limit rule are as follows:

  • Individuals who are permanently disabled and unable to work for 12 months or more. Note: Individuals who are temporarily disabled are exempt during the temporary period only;
  • Former Foster Care Youth and Independent Living Skills program participants 18 through 24 years of age;
  • Individuals 64 years of age and older;

How to Apply

To apply for general assistance, please visit the Workforce and Benefits Administration public contact office nearest you.




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