WorkFirst Orientation

Created on: 
Jun 24 2014

Revised on: September 20, 2021


Purpose: This section describes the WorkFirst Orientation, which is a condition of eligibility for TANF/SFA applicants. 

WAC 388-310-0200


WAC 388-310-0800

WorkFirst-Support services.

WAC 388-400-0005

Who is eligible for Temporary Assistance for Needy Families?

WAC 388-400-0010

Who is eligible for State Family Assistance?

WAC 388-406-0010

How do I apply for cash assistance or Basic Food benefits?

WAC 355-406-0055

When do my benefits start?


Clarifying Information

  1. Applicants who will be mandatory WorkFirst participants if approved for TANF/SFA must complete the WorkFirst Orientation as a condition of eligibility. This includes adding an adult to an active TANF/SFA AU.
  2. All adults added to TANF/SFA AUs must complete orientation, including those transferring from other cash programs:
    1. If the adult is unable to complete orientation immediately, send a Request for Information (RFI) letter 0023-02, giving the new adult 10 days to complete the orientation and provide any other outstanding verification, if needed.
    2. When adding an adult to a current TANF AU and the adult is not available, continue the procedures in Pending an Application or Eligibility Review.
    3. If the contact is initiated with a Public Benefits Specialist (PBS), send a Request for Information (RFI) letter 0023-02 for WorkFirst Orientation, following #4 of Pending and Application or Eligibility Review Procedure.
    4. If the adult does not follow through, after adequate advance notice of adverse action, close the TANF AU using code 552, failure to provide information.
  3. Once the WorkFirst Orientation is complete, the date of TANF approval goes back to the date all other eligibility factors are met.
  4. Applicants who are not required to complete the WorkFirst Orientation:
    1. Child only cases
    2. DCA cases
    3. Clients open on TANF/SFA within the past 30 days.
  5. For additional information on the WorkFirst Orientation, please see WorkFirst Handbook Section 1.4.
  6. Applicants who state it's not possible for them to complete a WorkFirst Orientation either in person or by phone may request an Exception to Rule (ETR).​
  7. CSD HQ provides the decision on the ETR request to waive WorkFirst Orientation.
  8. If the ETR is approved, staff must document the ETR approval in Remarks for the client's Work Registration/Participation screen.

Worker Responsibilities

  1. TANF/SFA applications should be processed no later than two (2) working days when the application was pended solely for completion of the orientation.
  2. Support services are available to allow applicants to attend and complete the WorkFirst Orientation prior to TANF/SFA approval:
    1. Child care (WFHB Ch.2.3.4)
    2. Transportation
      1. Whenever possible, issue bus tickets to the client
      2. If unable to issue bus tickets, use the AP (Appointment Pending) component in eJAS to issue a voucher or gas card 
  3. If the TANF paid-thru date is more than 30 days prior to the application date, the following information must be added to the Work Registration/Participation screen before the system will allow TANF to be approved
    1. Client WF Orientation Status Code:
      1. C  - WF Orientation Completion
      2. R – Recent Tribal TANF/out of state TANF
      3. W – WF Orientation Waiver
    2. Client WF Orientation Status Effective Date:
      1. WF Orientation completion date; or
      2. End date of the Tribal or out-of-state TANF  received within 30 days of the application date
      3. Exception to Rule (ETR) waiver approval date; or
  4. If both the status code and status effective date are not entered on the Work Registration screen and the TANF paid thru date is more than 30 days prior to the application date, the system:
    1. Denies the application with reason code “134 – No WorkFirst Orientation” – if the only reason for the denial is not meeting the orientation requirement.
    2. Generates a General Denial letter (004-05) to include the name of the client who did not meet the orientation requirement, what action they failed to do, and the appropriate WAC.
  5. When adding a person to an active TANF/SFA AU who has not completed WorkFirst Orientation by the date requested in the RFI:
    1. Close the TANF/SFA with a "552 - Failed to Provide Verification" if WorkFirst Orientation has not been completed by the pending adult.
    2. Generate the Termination of TANF/SFA (0006-02) to include the name of the client who did not meet the WorkFirst Orientation requirement, what action they failed to do, and the appropriate WAC.


Note:  For further information on the WorkFirst Orientation see the WorkFirst Handbook.
Note:  For information on scheduling and tracking the orientation and processing the application see the CSD Procedures Handbook.