Department of Human Services

Food Stamp OnlinePolicy Manual

Household Concept






Food Stamp Table of Contents

1240-1-2-.02 (3)

Certain individuals residing with a household are not considered household members when determining the householdís eligibility and allotment amount. These non-household members, as discussed in this section, may participate as separate households, if otherwise eligible.


(a)   Roomers:


A roomer is an individual to whom a household furnishes lodging, but not meals, for compensation.


(b)   Live-In Attendants


A live-in attendant is an individual who resides with a household to provide medical, housekeeping, child care, or other similar personal services.


Example: A live-in attendant stays with an elderly couple Monday through Friday to prepare meals. She returns to her own home on weekends but eats with the couple while in their home during the week.


The live-in attendant may participate in the Food Stamp Program as a separate household, if otherwise eligible.


(c)    Ineligible Students


An ineligible student is an individual who is enrolled in an institution of higher education, but is ineligible because he/she fails to meet the student eligibility criteria.


1.      Definition of a Student


(i)     A student is any person who meets all of the following criteria:

(I)     is at least age 18, but under age 50;

(II)   is physically and mentally fit; and

(III) is enrolled at least half-time in an institution of higher education.


Note:An institution of higher education is defined as any school, college, or institute which requires a high school diploma or G.E.D. for admission or enrollment in the individualís particular curriculum.


(ii)   Do not consider any of the following individuals as students:


(I)     individuals age 17 or under, or individuals age 50 or over;

(II)       physically or mentally disabled individuals;

(III)     persons attending high school;

(IV)    persons participating in on-the-job training programs;

(V)      persons not attending school at least half-time; or

(VI)    persons enrolled full time in schools or training programs which are not institutions of higher education.


2.      Student Eligibility Criteria


To be eligible to participate in the Food Stamp Program, a student must meet at least one of the following criteria:


(i)     actually be working an average of 20 hours each week or an average of 80 hours per month.


if self employed, actually be working an average of 20 hours per week or an average of 80 hours per month or receiving monthly earnings of at least equal to the Federal minimum wage multiplied by 80 hours;†††††


(ii)   be participating in a State or Federally financed work-study program funded in full or part by Title IV, Part C, of the Higher Education Act 1965 (as amended) during the school year;


(iii) be responsible for the care of a child who is a dependent household member under the age of six;


Note:The student does not have to personally care for the child all the time. The child may be in day care while the student is in class.


Note:Apply this exemption to the same individual for work registration exemption purposes.


(iv) be responsible for the care of a child who is a dependent household member over the age of five but under the age of 12, for whom adequate child care is unavailable to enable the student to attend class, satisfy the 20-hour work requirement of the Food Stamp Act or participate in a State or Federally financed work study program during regular school year. Consider adequate child care to exist only when another responsible person lives in the home who is available and able to care for the child. When the student must obtain day care outside the home, do not consider adequate child care to exist.


Example: When a student and her child are the only members of the household, adequate child care is not available.


Example:Edna Price, a student, and her 8-year old son, Max, live in the home of Ednaís parents. Neither of Ednaís parents is disabled.


Ednaís mother takes care of Max before and after school, while Edna is in class. In this situation, adequate child care is available.


(v)   be receiving Cash Assistance in his/her own behalf;


(vi) be assigned to or placed in an institution of higher education through a program under the Workforce Investment Act;


(vii) The maximum age level of students attending institutions of higher education who are prohibited from receiving food stamp assistance is 50;


(viii)     Students enrolled in institutions of higher education as a result of participation in an Employment and Training Program through Cash Assistance or Food Stamps;


(ix)  Full-time students who are single parents responsible for the care of children under 12 regardless of the availability of adequate child care; or


(x)    A program under section 236 of the Trade Act of 1974.


3.      Enrollment Status


A studentís enrollment status begins on the first day of the school term. It continues through normal periods of class attendance, including vacations and recess when the student intends to return to school after such vacations and recesses.


The enrollment status ends when the student either:


(i)     graduates;

(ii)   is suspended;

(iii) is expelled;

(iv) drops out; or

(v)   does not intend to register for the next normal school term, not counting summer school.


4.      Eligibility During Non-Enrollment Periods


Students meeting the student eligibility criteria during the regular school year will remain eligible during the summer months. Students who lose their enrollment status or who do not intend to register for the next normal school session (not including summer school) will lose their student status and be treated as any person/household.


5.      Work Registration


Eligible students are exempt from the work registration/job search requirements.


6.      Certification Procedures for Remaining Household Members


Certify the remaining members of a household containing an ineligible student, if otherwise eligible.


(d)   Others


Other individuals who live with the household but do not customarily purchase food and prepare meals with the household are considered non-household members.


Example:A three-person household applies for Food Stamps. They live with an un-related two-person household in the same house in order to save on rent. The two families do not purchase and prepare meals together.


Consider the two-person household as non-household members.


Glossary of Terms


Food Stamp Table of Contents