Job & Family Services Office of Communications
Our Services

The Ohio Department of Job and Family Services offers a wide range of assistance for Ohioans. This includes employment and training assistance, unemployment compensation, cash assistance, food assistance, child care, child and adult protective services, adoption, and child support. For more information about these services and how to access them, just click on the tabs at the top of this page, or on any of the questions below.  

  
Cash Assistance

Q. How do I know if I’m eligible for cash assistance?  

Q. How can I apply for cash assistance?  


Child Care

Q. I want to work, but I can’t pay for child care. Can ODJFS help?

Q. How can I apply for child care assistance?

Q. Can you help me find a good child care provider?  

 
Child Support

Q. I just lost my job. How can I pay my child support?  

Q. I haven’t lost my job, but I’m still having trouble paying my child support. What should I do?

Q. My children receive child support, and it helps, but I just lost my job. Is there any way I can increase the amount of the child support order?

Q. My children’s other parent has stopped paying support. What can I do?


Child Welfare

Q. How can I report child abuse?

Q. I’m interested in becoming a foster parent. What should I do?

Q. I’m interested in becoming an adoptive parent. What should I do?


Employment and Training Assistance

Q. What employment and training assistance does ODJFS provide?

Q. How can I apply for employment and training services?

Q. How can I find a job?


Food Assistance

Q. How do I know if I’m eligible for food assistance?

Q. How can I apply for food assistance?


Unemployment Compensation

Q. How do I know if I’m eligible for unemployment compensation?

Q. How can I apply for unemployment compensation?


Other Assistance

Q. Are any other types of assistance available?

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Cash Assistance

Q. How do I know if I’m eligible for cash assistance?  

A. Ohio offers two types of cash assistance: Ohio Works First and Disability Financial Assistance.
Ohio Works First provides time-limited, monthly cash assistance to eligible families. To be eligible for Ohio Works First cash assistance, adults and minor heads of household must participate in work activities. For more information, go to http://ODJFSBenefits.Ohio.gov, http://jfs.ohio.gov/factsheets/OWF.pdf, or call or visit your county department of job and family services.

The Disability Financial Assistance Program provides a monthly cash assistance benefit to eligible low-income, disabled individuals who do not meet all the eligibility requirements necessary to receive help from other federal and state programs. For more information, go to http://jfs.ohio.gov/factsheets/disabilityFA.pdf or call or visit your county department of job and family services.

Q. How can I apply for cash assistance?  

A. You can apply for cash assistance online by going to http://ODJFSBenefits.Ohio.gov or by filling out a “Request for Cash, Food and Medical Assistance” form and submitting it to your county department of job and family services. For more information, go to http://jfs.ohio.gov/ofam/cmandfsa.stm or call or visit your county agency.

Answer the questions on the form as thoroughly as possible. If you cannot answer all the questions on the form, just complete the first page and sign and date it. You will be asked to attach copies of proof of your income, other financial resources (if applicable), citizenship or qualified-alien status, pregnancy (if applicable) and any insurance you may have. If English is not your primary language, if you have a disability, or if you have questions about your case, someone at your county agency can help you complete your application.

You can then drop off, mail or fax the application. After your county agency receives your application, you may be called for an interview.

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Child Care

Q. I want to work, but I can’t pay for child care. Can ODJFS help?  

A. ODJFS offers financial assistance to help eligible parents pay for child care while they engage in work or training efforts. To be eligible, a family’s income must be below 125 percent of the federal poverty guidelines. After that, families may remain eligible unless their income becomes greater than 200 percent of the federal poverty guidelines.

Q. How can I apply for child care assistance?  

A. Call or visit your county department of job and family services. You can fill out an application, and staff there will determine whether you are eligible.

For more information, go to http://jfs.ohio.gov/factsheets/ChildCare.pdf or call (877) 852-0010.

Q. Can you help me find a good child care provider?

A.  To search for child care providers in Ohio and view past inspection reports, go to http://www.odjfs.state.oh.us/cdc/query.asp. You can search by county, city, zip code, program type and/or Step Up To Quality rating. You also can search for providers that serve families whose child care is publicly funded.

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Child Support

Q. I just lost my job. How can I pay my child support?  

A. If you have a child support order in Ohio and you lose your job through no fault of your own, you have the right to request a review of that child support order from your county child support enforcement agency (CSEA). The CSEA will consider your case and present a recommendation for a possible adjustment. The amount you pay could go up, go down or stay the same. To find the CSEA in your county, call (800) 686-1556 toll-free or visit http://jfs.ohio.gov/County/County_Directory.stm.

Q. I haven’t lost my job, but I’m still having trouble paying my child support. What should I do?   

A. If you have experienced at least a 30 percent decrease in gross income or income-producing assets for a period of six months because of circumstances beyond your control, and you expect that decrease to continue for an extended period of time, you have the right to request a review of your child support order from your county child support enforcement agency (CSEA). The CSEA will consider your case and present a recommendation for a possible adjustment. The amount you pay could go up, go down or stay the same. To find the CSEA in your county, call (800) 686-1556 toll-free or visit http://jfs.ohio.gov/County/County_Directory.stm.

Q. My children receive child support, and it helps, but I just lost my job. Is there any way I can increase the amount of the child support order?

A. Custodial parents have the right to ask their local child support enforcement agency (CSEA) to review their child support orders if their income drastically changes. To find the CSEA in your county, call (800) 686-1556 or visit http://jfs.ohio.gov/County/County_Directory.stm. The CSEA will consider your case and present a recommendation for a possible adjustment. The amount you receive could go up, go down or stay the same.  

Q. My children’s other parent has stopped paying support. What can I do?  

A. Contact your county child support enforcement agency (CSEA). To find the CSEA in your county, call (800) 686-1556 toll-free or visit http://jfs.ohio.gov/County/County_Directory.stm.

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Child Welfare

Q. How can I report child abuse?

A. If you suspect a child is being abused or neglected, call (855) OH-CHILD (1-855-642-4453), and you’ll be connected to a local child welfare or law enforcement agency.

You also can report abuse or neglect by directly contacting the law enforcement agency or public children services agency in the county where the incident occurred or where the child and his or her parent, guardian or custodian live. To find the phone number and location of your county public children services agency, go to http://jfs.ohio.gov/County/County_Directory.pdf.

Q. I’m interested in becoming a foster parent. What should I do?

A. Call (866) 886-3537 and select option 4, email HELP-DESK-OCF@jfs.ohio.gov, or visit your county public children services agency. To learn more about foster parenting, view the brochure “Thinking about Becoming a Foster Parent or Adopting a Waiting Child?”

Q. I’m interested in becoming an adoptive parent. What should I do?

A. Call (866) 886-3537 and select option 4, email HELP-DESK-OCF@jfs.ohio.gov, or visit your county public children services agency. To learn more, download the publication “Ohio Adoption Guide: A Handbook for Prospective Families”.

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Employment and Training Assistance

Q. What employment and training assistance does ODJFS provide?  

A. ODJFS offers a variety of help for out-of-work Ohioans and businesses looking to hire workers. The agency manages OhioMeansJobs.com, where individuals can post their resumes and search tens of thousands of job opportunities by a variety of key words, including job title, location and desired salary. ODJFS also supervises a network of county OhioMeansJobs Centers, where individuals can get one-on-one help and learn more about available job-training programs.

Q. How can I apply for employment and training services?  

A. Call or visit your county’s OhioMeansJobs Center. To find the center nearest you, go to http://jfs.ohio.gov/owd/wia/wiamap.stm.

Q. How can I find a job?  

A. Visit OhioMeansJobs.com. Through a partnership with Monster.com, this website lists tens of thousands of job opportunities from within a 50-mile radius of the state. People looking for a job can go to the site to post their resumes online or to search for available jobs by keyword or location. 

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Food Assistance

Q. How do I know if I’m eligible for food assistance?  

A. To be eligible for food assistance through the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP, formerly known as food stamps), your family income cannot exceed 130 percent of the federal poverty guidelines. To see if you might be eligible for SNAP, visit http://ODJFSBenefits.Ohio.gov. You also can check your eligibility by calling or visiting your county department of job and family services. More information about the program is available at http://jfs.ohio.gov/factsheets/foodassistance.pdf.

You also may be eligible for The Emergency Food Assistance Program (TEFAP), which is distributed through local nonprofit agencies, such as food pantries. To be eligible for TEFAP, your family income must be below 200 percent of the federal poverty guidelines.

To find a local food bank, visit http://www.oashf.org/.

You also can contact your county department of job and family services and ask for help finding an agency that provides emergency food assistance.

Q. How can I apply for food assistance?  

A. You can apply for food assistance online at http://ODJFSBenefits.Ohio.gov or by filling out a “Request for Cash, Food and Medical Assistance” form and submitting it to your county department of job and family services. For more information, go to http://jfs.ohio.gov/ofam/cmandfsa.stm or call or visit your local county agency.

Answer the questions on the form as thoroughly as possible. If you cannot answer all the questions on the form, just complete the first page and sign and date it. You will be asked to attach copies of proof of your income, other financial resources (if applicable), citizenship or qualified-alien status, pregnancy (if applicable) and any insurance you may have. If English is not your primary language, if you have a disability, or if you have questions about your case, someone at your county agency can help you complete your application.

You can then drop off, mail or fax the application. After your county agency receives your application, you may be called for an interview.

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Unemployment Compensation

Q. How do I know if I’m eligible for unemployment compensation? 

A. If you lost your job through no fault of your own, you might qualify for unemployment compensation. For more information, visit http://unemployment.ohio.gov.   

Q. How can I apply for unemployment compensation?  

A. You may file online 24 hours a day, seven days a week, at http://unemployment.ohio.gov. You also may file by phone with our toll-free numbers, (877) OHIO-JOB (1-877-644-6562) or TTY at (888) 642-8203, Monday through Friday 8 a.m. - 5 p.m. (excluding holidays). When you call, please have paper and pencil available.

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Other Assistance

Q. Are any other types of assistance available?  

A. For a list of other resources, from both public and private sources, visit http://www.ohioheretohelp.com.

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