How to Find Out if Someone Is on Public Assistance

How to Find Out if Someone Is on Public Assistance
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Public assistance programs, or welfare, are run by state governments. Although welfare was initially established by the federal government during the Great Depression, control of welfare systems has since been turned over to states. Each program varies from state to state and is regulated by state government officials. Most recipients of welfare view the process as a private matter. The relinquishing of information about who is on welfare is decided on a state by state basis. Prior to beginning the search for a name on the public assistance payroll, please check with your state's policy.

Contact your state's welfare program to learn about its policies on sharing information about who receives public assistance. If this information is kept strictly private, reconsider your search. It may be more legal trouble than its worth peering into these records. However, some welfare programs may be willing to share this information with potential employers.

If you are undeterred on your mission, begin gathering information about the subject of your search. This can include address, work history and phone number.

Contact a private investigator. There are both local and Internet resources for private investigation. Choose the one the fits your budget. Share the information you have gathered with the private investigator as well as your query about your subject's public assistance status.

Wait patiently for the results of the professional search to return. It may take a few weeks for the search results to be returned.