Making the Most of Government Assistance in Las Vegas

It can be difficult to make ends meet at times. With increasing inflation, the cost of living from groceries to medical care to housing are all on the rise and show no signs of slowing down.

At Koster’s, we care about our customers and their need for assistance. Here, we’ll discuss the programs available locally and state-wide across Nevada to help individuals and families who are in need of assistance during trying times. 

Government Assistance: Why You May Need It

Government assistance can make a significant impact on individuals or families in Las Vegas, Clark County, or throughout the entirety of Nevada. Qualifying for assistance means that you can better budget the income you do have to pay your rent and bills on time, work towards paying down high-interest credit cards and loans, or simply reserve a little more of your income for emergency funds, should you need them. 

Qualifying for government assistance can seem like a monumental task, but it’s usually worth it if you qualify for Medicaid, SNAP or other helpful entitlement programs. Simply removing the stress of having to worry about medical bills or groceries makes applying for government assistance worthwhile. 

Does Nevada Offer Government Assistance?

Nevada residents are eligible for a number of state, county, and even city government assistance programs. 

What Assistance Can I Get in Nevada?

There are a number of government assistance programs available in Nevada. These include:

Medical Programs

Medical Programs include Medicaid, Waivers, and Nevada Check Up.

  • Medicaid is available for many people including low income families with children whose family income is at or below 133% percent of poverty, Supplemental Security Income (SSI) recipients, certain Medicare beneficiaries, and recipients of adoption assistance, foster care and some children aging out of foster care.
  • Waivers are available for Home or Community-Based Services recipients for certain people throughout Nevada.
  • Senior Rx Program covers 100% of prescription medication costs for eligible seniors (age 62+) while they are in the coverage gap.
  • Disability Rx Program covers 100% of prescription medication costs for eligible persons with disabilities between the ages of 18 and 61 while they are in a coverage gap.
  • Nevada Health Centers offers 16 health center locations throughout Nevada for a sliding scale fee.
  • Community Health Alliance offers quality medical and dental care to medically disenfranchised persons in northern Nevada.
  • Nevada Check Up is a program for low-income, uninsured children who do not qualify for Medicaid or have private insurance. It provides low-cost, comprehensive health coverage, promoting health care coverage for children while encouraging individual responsibility and working with public and private health care providers and community advocates for children.

All of these programs are administered by the Division of Welfare and Supportive Services.

Financial Assistance

Financial assistance to Nevadans includes TANF, Energy Assistance Program, Child Care Assistance Program, Child Support Enforcement, and Free Tax Return Preparation.

  • TANF (Temporary Assistance for Needy Families) is a time-limited cash assistance program that helps families in need care for their children in their own home. It also works to reduce dependency by promoting job preparation, reduce out-of-wedlock pregnancies, and encourage the formation and maintenance of two-parent families. 
  • SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program) is the program that used to be called Food Stamps. Eligible individuals and families receive benefits monthly on a card that can be used to purchase food at grocery stores, participating convenience stores, and more. 
  • Energy Assistance Program (EAP) assists qualifying low-income Nevadans with the cost of home energy, ensuring that these residents can weather the extreme heat and cold of the high desert as applicable in summer and winter.
  • The Childcare Assistance Program helps low-income families, families receiving temporary assistance, and those who are transitioning from public assistance in getting childcare so that they can work.
  • Child Support Enforcement (CSE) is intended to ensure families’ self-sufficiency by making child support a reliable source of income. This program works to ensure children have financial and medical support from both of their parents and encourages fiscally responsible behavior towards children.
  • Free Tax Return Preparation (VITA) offers free tax help to people who make $52,000 or less, those with disabilities, and limited English speaking taxpayers who need assistance. Volunteers are IRS-certified and provide free basic income tax return preparation and free electronic filing. Additionally, the Tax Counseling for the Elderly (TCE) program offers free tax help for all taxpayers, especially those 60 years of age and older. TCE specializes in questions about pensions and retirement-related issues, especially for seniors. 

These programs are administered by the Department of Health and Human Services in Nevada.


The Nevada WIC (Women, Infants, and Children) Program is open to families meeting the following requirements:

  • A person must be pregnant, breastfeeding, or a postpartum woman, infant, or child up to 5 years of age
  • Must be a resident of Nevada
  • Must have a risk identified through a health/nutritional assessment
  • Income qualifications: WIC in Nevada is open to many incomes, including working and non-working families. If you are on Medicaid, TANF, SNAP or FDPIR (Food Distribution Program on Indian Reservation), you are eligible for WIC.

Section 8 Housing

Section 8 Housing is a federal program that provides rental assistance to low-income families, elderly, and disabled individuals. In Nevada, the Nevada Housing Authorities administers Section 8 Housing. Applicants’ income must be at or below 50% of the Area Median Income. Other qualifications such as citizenship status, criminal history, housing history, and other factors (such as preference basis) also apply. While Section 8 Housing seeks to cover as much rent as possible for those in need, it may not cover the entire rent for a particular property, and the amount left over must be paid by the individual or family. 

Clark County Programs

Clark County also offers several programs to its residents, such as:

Eligibility Requirements for Government Assistance Programs

Eligibility requirements for the wide variety of government assistance programs in Nevada vary widely based on the program, its intended impact, who it is targeting, and a number of other factors. Eligibility requirements may include income, household size, family or individual, applicable poverty levels (some are area levels, some county or city, some state and some federal), assessments that have been completed, rent determination, payments for child support, number of adults working in the home, and many more qualifiers. Your housing history, criminal history, and income history may even become determining factors. Both the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) and Division of Welfare and Supportive Services (DWSS) websites are chock full of information on all of the various programs offered and the requirements and applications for each of these programs.

Frequently Asked Questions

How Much Cash Assistance Will I Get in Nevada?

This depends entirely on whether or not you meet all of the eligibility requirements and by how much. While income is one of the eligibility requirements for each of these programs, and most require that you be a certain percentage above or below the area, state, or federal poverty level, it is not the only income. A number of different factors are considered for each program, and each program has its own set of requirements.

Does Nevada Give Cash Assistance?

Nevada’s TANF (Temporary Aid for Needy Families) program has components to it that involve one-time lump sum and monthly payments for families that qualify. Please note that TANF does not apply to individuals, only families. 

Applying for Government Assistance Programs

Similarly to eligibility requirements, each application will have its own documentation requirements and items that will need to be included. One of the more helpful sites for this is the DWSS website, Access Nevada, which can be used to apply for multiple programs at once. At this site, you can apply for food assistance, health assistance, cash assistance, and even COVID-19 testing.  

What Comes Next?

Now that you’ve completed your applications, it’s time to sit back and relax. One item to work on during this time, however, should be a consideration of how the assistance you may be receiving will impact your budget.

Creating a simple budget that you can use to create your initial budget. From there, you can work with the numbers and determine how the assistance will impact you, your budget, and your family when it comes through. Having this planned out in advance will help to ensure that you continue to practice fiscal responsibility and wisdom in how you spend your money

Koster’s Is Here For You

Regardless of the outcome of any government assistance, Koster’s is here to help you stay out of a difficult financial situation. We offer installment loans designed to work with your budget and your needs. 

Whether your goal is to save up for a vacation or pay down your credit card bills, Koster’s is here to help. Contact us today for more information or to set up an appointment, or simply come on by. We always look forward to working with you.

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