Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), also known as food stamps, is administered by individual states and territories under the oversight of the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), and plays a vital role in addressing food insecurity. While the program’s fundamental eligibility criteria are consistent across most states, there are variations in income requirements in a some states.
According to the USDA, nearly 41 million Americans are currently benefiting from the SNAP program. With the persistent rise in inflation, food prices have continued to climb, leading to a significant increase in this year’s cost-of-living adjustment compared to previous years. So, if you rely on this money, you’re about to get an important increment in your monthly allotment.
SNAP Eligibility: The Maximum Income Threshold to Qualify for in September 2023
SNAP eligibility hinges primarily on income, with the threshold set at or below 130% of the federal poverty level for gross monthly income, before any deductions are applied. It’s worth noting that some states, such as Alaska and Hawaii, have more generous income limits. The USDA’s Food and Nutrition Service has already unveiled the SNAP income eligibility criteria for the period from October 1, 2023, to September 30, 2024, which will be adjusted upwards to better support a basic standard of living. These income limits will come into effect in October 2023.
Regarding your household size, these are the new maximum income limits for SNAP benefits (in the 48 contiguous states, then Alaska and Hawaii, respectively):
- 1 person: $1,473 / $1,841 / $1,694
- 2 people: $1,984 / $2,480 / $2,282
- 3 people: $2,495 / $3,119 / $2,870
- 4 people: $3,007 / $3,759 / $3,458
- 5 people: $3,518 / $4,398 / $4,047
- 6 people: $4,029 / $5,037 / $4,635
- 7 people: $4,541 / $5,676 / $5,223
- 8 people: $5,052 / $6,315 / $5,811
- Each additional person: $512 / $640 / $589
How Much Can You Claim From SNAP Benefits Now?
The maximum monthly SNAP benefits for households in the 48 contiguous states and Washington, D.C. for the period of October 2022 to September 2023 vary based on the household size. For instance, a one-person household can receive up to $281, while a three-person household is eligible for a maximum benefit of $740. Larger households receive higher benefits, with each additional person adding $211 to the allotment. According to the new numbers of the USDA, these are the SNAP benefits monthly payments to be disbursed among recipients, according to the household’s size (in the 48 contiguous states and D.C.):
- 1 person: $281
- 2 people: $516
- 3 people: $740
- 4 people: $939
- 5 people: $1,116
- 6 people: $1,339
- 7 people: $1,480
- 8 people: $1,691
- Each additional person: $211
New SNAP Work Requirements You Have to Be Aware Of
The SNAP program underwent significant changes as a result of the Fiscal Responsibility Act, which was passed on June 3. This legislation not only suspended the debt ceiling but also introduced measures to curb spending and reduce the deficit. One of the notable changes pertains to work requirements for SNAP recipients.
Specifically, the act temporarily elevates the work requirements for able-bodied adults without dependents (ABAWD) who receive SNAP benefits. Under the previous rules, adults between the ages of 18 and 49 were subject to a three-month SNAP limit within a three-year period if they didn’t meet certain work requirements. However, the new provisions gradually expand the age range for individuals subject to the ABAWD time limit.
Additionally, the act introduces exemptions for certain groups, including veterans, homeless individuals, and young adults aging out of foster care. These exemptions acknowledge the unique challenges faced by these individuals and aim to provide them with continued access to SNAP benefits.
These are the new thresholds for the ABAWD’s:
- Sept. 1, 2023: The age of those subject to ABAWD increases to 50.
- Oct. 1, 2023: The age of those subject to ABAWD increases to 52.
- Oct. 1, 2024: The age of those subject to AVAWD increases to 54.