RI Works Benefit Increase is Almost Here!

Published on Friday, August 13, 2021

Approved in the legislative session that ended earlier this summer, the Rhode Island Works (RIW) cash assistance benefit increased by 30 percent, effective July 1, 2021. The RI Department of Human Services (DHS) needed time to update our system, but on August 16, 2021, RIW recipients will have two payments added to their EBT card:

  • their normal RIW benefit AND
  • a one-time payment of the additional benefits you should have received in July and August

For example, if a RIW family of three usually receives $554 a month, on August 16th, they will have two deposits on their EBT card.

  1. Their normal RIW benefit: $277 (one half of their monthly benefit amount without the increase)
  2. Their one-time payment: $334 (the difference between $721 and $554 multiplied by the two months: July and August. $167 X 2= $334)

The new, higher benefit amount will be issued starting September 1, 2021. RIW cash assistance will continue to be issued twice monthly with payments on the 1st and the 16th.

Below is a chart with examples of what the benefit change may be for RIW families. The last column shows the amounts they will receive starting September 1, 2021. Larger households will also receive an increased benefit.

If your family does NOT live in Public or Subsidized Housing

RIW Household size

If your family has been receiving

Your new monthly benefit will be

On the 1st and 16th you will receive

1

$327

$425

$212.50

2

$449

$584

$292.00

3

$554

$721

$360.50

4

$634

$825

$412.50

If your family LIVES in Public or Subsidized Housing

RIW Household size

If your family has been receiving

Your new monthly benefit will be

On the 1st and 16th you will receive

1

$277

$360

$180.00

2

$399

$519

$259.50

3

$504

$656

$328.00

4

$584

$760

$380.00

RIW recipients will also receive a Benefit Decision Notice telling them that their benefits have changed.  Most people will receive a notice indicating their RI Works benefits have increased due to correction made to their case. The information about their “one-time payment” will be on the notice under the section “Corrected RI Works Benefit Issued”.  The Benefit Decision Notice may also have information about a change in other benefits, such as SNAP, due to their RI Works benefit increase or other program changes.

Other changes to your household income or size could also impact their benefit amount.   

If RIW recipients have questions about the amounts added to their card, they should call 1-855-MY-RIDHS (1-855-697-4347) Monday through Friday, except holidays, from 8:30AM to 3PM.