The Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP)

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What is LIHEAP?
LIHEAP stands for "Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program." Through this program, the federal and state government gives money each year to help the poor pay for winter heat bills.

What kind of help do people get from LIHEAP?

There are two kinds of help that people can get through LIHEAP.

  • Subsidy. The "Subsidy" part of LIHEAP runs in November and December of each year. People who do not have a lot of income and who have to pay home heating bills can get money to help pay for their heat. This money can be given only once during the year.
  • Crisis. The "Crisis" part of LIHEAP runs from early January until sometime in March of each year. It only runs until the money for it is all gone. This program helps people who are about to lose their heat because they cannot pay the bill. Those who can get it are people who have gotten a note from their utility company saying their gas or electricity is going to be shut off or those who only have 4 days left on their fuel oil, propane, kerosene, wood or coal.

Where do people go to sign up?
People sign up for the program at their local Community Action Agency. To find out more about LIHEAP, call 1-800-456-3452 or visit

Reviewed August 2009