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Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)

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The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) issues monthly electronic benefits that can be used like cash to purchase food at authorized retail food stores. Eligibility and benefit levels are based on household size, income and other factors.

SNAP Benefits
SNAP can help you put healthy food on the table. SNAP monthly benefits can be used to purchase food at authorized retail food stores. SNAP benefits help low-income working people, seniors, the disabled and others feed their families.
SNAP Eligibility
Eligibility is based on income. If your income is less than or equal to the amounts in the charts supplied (based on your family size), you may be eligible for SNAP benefits.
Applying for SNAP
Applying for SNAP benefits starts with an application.
Telephone Recertification for Current SNAP Recipients
If you already get SNAP benefits in New York State, as long as you do not also get Temporary Assistance (cash) benefits, you can recertify (renew your benefits) without coming into the social services office.
Transitional SNAP Benefits
If your temporary assistance cash case closes, in most cases, you can still receive SNAP benefits, even if the reason that your case is closing is because you now have too much income to be eligible.

SNAP Benefits

SNAP benefits can help you put healthy food on the table. SNAP monthly benefits can be used to purchase food at authorized retail food stores. SNAP benefits help low-income working people, seniors, the disabled and others feed their families. Benefits are provided through an electronic benefit card, similar to a debit or credit card. Eligibility and benefit levels are based on household size, income, expenses and other factors.

SNAP has made it easier for many working households to apply and gain access to these critical nutrition supports. If you work hard but still struggle to make ends meet, you may be able to supplement your food budget through SNAP.

If you are eligible for or currently receive SNAP benefits, you may be interested in nutrition education. Visit Eat Smart New York to learn more about how to better feed your family with less money.

For more information about the Federal Administration of SNAP, visit: U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA)

It’s Easier to Use SNAP Benefits

SNAP Benefits are provided through an electronic benefit card, similar to a bank debit card or credit card. This process is called Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT). If you are eligible, you will be issued an EBT card, an account will automatically be set up for you, and every month your benefits will automatically be deposited into your account. Your EBT card and Personal Identification Number (PIN) are used to pay for your food at authorized retail food stores and participating Farmers’ Markets. For more information, go to Electronic Benefits Transfer.

SNAP Eligibility

If your income (based on your family size) is less than or equal to the amounts in the charts below, you may be eligible for SNAP benefits. If your household's gross income is below these amounts, it does not ensure that you will be eligible for a benefit. A SNAP budget must be calculated for your household in order to determine eligibility and benefit amount. The only way to determine if your household is eligible for SNAP benefits is to apply.

"Income" means your household's total gross monthly income before taxes and withholdings are subtracted. Benefits from other assistance programs such as Unemployment Insurance Benefits, public assistance payments, Social Security or SSI benefits count as income. Certain household expenses, such as monthly Child Support payments paid by a member of your household for a child who does not live with you, can be deducted from your household's gross income.

You Can Now Have Savings and Qualify for SNAP Benefits

In New York State, SNAP now allows you to have more money in a checking or savings account, or even a retirement account or college savings account, without affecting your eligibility for SNAP benefits. Most households applying for SNAP benefits no longer have to pass a savings/resource test in order to get SNAP benefits. This means that the household's assets (stocks, savings and retirement accounts, etc.) are not considered when determining eligibility. Please note that if you apply for SNAP benefits, you may still be asked to provide information regarding such resources.

Income Guidelines (no elderly or disabled member)
Family Size Monthly Gross Income* Annual Gross Income*
1 $ 1,245 $ 14,940
2 $ 1,681 $ 20,172
3 $ 2,116 $ 25,392
4 $ 2,552 $ 30,624
Each additional person $ 436 + $ 5,232 +

*These figures are based upon SNAP Standards effective October 1, 2013.

Note: There is no resource test unless someone in the household has been sanctioned or disqualified from the SNAP. If a household member is sanctioned or disqualified, then the household’s countable resources must not exceed $2000.

Income Guidelines for Households with an Elderly or Disabled Member and Households with Dependent Care Expenses
Family Size Monthly Gross Income* Annual Gross Income*
1 $ 1,915 $ 22,980
2 $ 2,585 $ 31,020
3 $ 3,255 $ 39,060
4 $ 3,925 $ 47,100
Each additional person $ 670 + $ 8,040 +

*These figures are based upon SNAP Standards effective October 1, 2013.

Note: There is no resource test for households with elderly/disabled members whose income falls at or below the amount listed above, unless a member of the household has been sanctioned or disqualified from participation in SNAP. Households with elderly/disabled members whose gross income exceeds these amounts may still be eligible for SNAP, if their countable resources do not exceed $3,250.

Maximum SNAP Benefit Allowances
Household Size Maximum Allotment
1 $ 189
2 $ 347
3 $ 497
4 $ 632
5 $ 750
6 $ 900
7 $ 995
8 $ 1,137
For each additional member $ 142+

* These figures are based on the ARRA reductions effective November 1, 2013.

Note: A SNAP budget must be calculated for your household in order to determine SNAP eligibility and benefit amount.

It’s Easy to Find out if You May be Eligible for SNAP Benefits

Visit myBenefits.ny.gov and click “Am I eligible?” to check your eligibility for SNAP benefits and other human services program benefits.

Telephone Recertification for Current SNAP Recipients

If you already get SNAP benefits in New York State, as long as you do not also get Temporary Assistance (cash) benefits, you can recertify (renew your benefits) without coming into the social services office. Recertification with a telephone interview is more convenient because you no longer have to travel to the SNAP Office for recertification. You will save valuable time needed for employment or other important matters by not reporting in person to your local department of Social Services for your interview.

For more information on any of these methods of application or recertification, contact your local department of social services office or the toll-free hotline: 1-800-342-3009.

Transitional SNAP Benefits

If your temporary assistance cash case closes, in most cases, you can still receive SNAP benefits, even if the reason that your case is closing is because you now have too much income to be eligible. This program helps families who used to get cash benefits make the transition to self-sufficiency. For most families leaving cash assistance, SNAP benefits can be continued — often at a higher amount than before — for five months.

Questions?

For further information about SNAP benefits, you may call the Office of Temporary and Disability Services toll-free hotline at 1-800-342-3009 and press “1” for SNAP or contact your local department of social services.

Nondiscrimination Statement

The U.S. Department of Agriculture prohibits discrimination against its customers, employees, and applicants for employment on the bases of race, color, national origin, age, disability, sex, gender identity, religion, reprisal, and where applicable, political beliefs, marital status, familial or parental status, sexual orientation, or all or part of an individual’s income is derived from any public assistance program, or protected genetic information in employment or in any program or activity conducted or funded by the Department. (Not all prohibited bases will apply to all programs and/or employment activities.)

If you wish to file a Civil Rights program complaint of discrimination, complete the USDA Program Discrimination Complaint Form online or at any USDA office, or call (866) 632-9992 to request the form. You may also write a letter containing all of the information requested in the form. Send your completed complaint form or letter to us by mail at U.S. Department of Agriculture, Director, Office of Adjudication, 1400 Independence Avenue, S.W., Washington, D.C. 20250-9410, by fax (202) 690-7442 or email at program.intake@usda.gov

Individuals who are deaf, hard of hearing or have speech disabilities may contact USDA through the Federal Relay Service at (800) 877-8339; or (800) 845-6136 (Spanish).

For any other information dealing with Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) issues, persons should either contact the USDA SNAP Hotline Number at (800) 221-5689, which is also in Spanish or call the State Information/Hotline Numbers.

USDA is an equal opportunity provider and employer.