Wisconsin Works (W-2)

Wisconsin Works, also known as W-2, can help you get a job and find a career path to support your family.

If you want to build your skills and start or continue a career path, Wisconsin Works provides real work experience and training, access to education, job interview preparation, and job matching. You may also get cash assistance while preparing for work.

How can Wisconsin Works help me?

There are many services offered by your Wisconsin Works agency in addition to cash assistance to meet your interests and needs. Some services are:

  • Help finding career interests;
  • Job matching;
  • Resume and interview skill growth;
  • Onsite work training;
  • High school or technical college education courses;
  • A connection to FoodShare and other assistance programs; and
  • Help applying for SSI/SSDI.
Do I qualify?

You may qualify if you:

  • Are a parent;
  • Have a child younger than 18 who lives with you; and
  • Meet the program income and asset limit;
    • Your income must be at or below 115% of the Federal Poverty Level
    • Your total assets can't be more than $2,500. Assets include your savings accounts and any high-valued belongings. Your car is only counted as an asset if it is worth more than $10,000.

You can use the ACCESS website to anonymously check if you qualify without applying.

Your local W-2 agency will help you determine if you meet program requirements. Find your local W-2 agency contact information on the Find Your Local W-2 Agency page.

How do I apply?

Applying can be done online or in person. This brochure can help you decide what documents to bring with you when you apply.

Understanding your cash assistance 

Wisconsin Works connects you to training and services. Your time in program activities may be compensated by cash assistance:

  • Depending on the hours of work and activities you do, you may receive a monthly payment of up to $653.

Once you have a full-time job and are no longer getting a check, Wisconsin Works can continue to help you stay employed and advance in your career.

Services for pregnant individuals and new mothers

If you have an at-risk pregnancy, you may be able to get $673 each month in your third trimester though Wisconsin Works.

If you are the birth parent of a newborn, you may be able to get monthly payment of $673 during the first eight weeks after childbirth.

If you are pregnant and do not have custody of other children, Wisconsin Works can help you:

  • Set up child care
  • Connect with community resources
  • Build skills for when you are able to work
Services for parents under 18

If you are a parent under 18, Wisconsin Works can help you create a support system. No matter your financial situation, Wisconsin Works can help you:

  • Find child care
  • Find a job or career path
  • Apply for other assistance programs
  • Connect you to family planning resources
What are my options if I am denied?

You have the right to request a Fact Finding Review if you do not agree with the agency's eligibility decision. To start this process, contact your agency to let them know you want a Fact Finding Review.

You can call the DCF W-2 Customer Service Line at 855-757-4539 to talk to a DCF staff member about your experience in Wisconsin Works. We appreciate all feedback and will try our best to provide the help you need.

You can also submit an online complaint if you aren't happy with your Wisconsin Works experience.

More resources

There are a variety of resources available to help you succeed. Learn more below!

Participant Stories

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Rosana's Story

Rosana was a single mom who was out of work and struggling to get by. She reached out to the Wisconsin Works (W-2) program and has since started a career in the food industry – moving from a cook to a higher-level position. Listen to her story Rosana's W2 Success Story on YouTube.

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Participant Stories

The Wiconsin Works programs works with agency partners across the state. Check out some of their recent success stories by visiting the FSC Wisconsin and Maximus websites.