Department of Human Services

Food Stamp Online  Policy Manual

Treatment of Income




Food Stamp Table of Contents


(a)   Income in Application Month


Base the eligibility and benefit level for the HH’s submitting an initial application on its circumstances for the entire calendar month in which the application is filed.  Use the income received by the HH members during the application month (i.e., income already received by the day of application plus any that is anticipated, with reasonable certainty, to be received in that month) to determine initial eligibility and benefit level.


Note:  If the household’s income is averaged, use the averaged amount for each month of the certification period, including the application month.  (This does not apply to income from a new source when it was not received during the entire application month.)


When an active Families First recipient applies for Food Stamp benefits, the caseworker will need to consider the child support pass through payments already received by the household and any anticipated payments the household is reasonably certain will be received during the certification period to determine the anticipated monthly amount.  Use these amounts to project the monthly amount of child support pass through income to be counted.                                  


(b)   Effects of Changes During the Application Processing Period


A household may be eligible in the application month based on circumstances existing in that month, but ineligible in the subsequent month because of changes which occur.  The household is entitled to benefits for the application month even when the processing of the application results in benefits not being issued/paid in the subsequent month.


Example:  A family applied for FF/FS on the 20th of the month. Income was from earnings the first week of the month.  The wage earner has been temporarily laid off and does not know when she will be called back to work.  Based on income, eligibility for the application month exists.  During the application processing, the wage earner is called back to work and one child leaves the home.  Projected ongoing earnings cause ineligibility of the remaining household members. Benefits are to be granted for the application month even though they are paid in the subsequent month.


Similarly, a household may be ineligible in the application month based on circumstances existing in that month, but eligible in the subsequent month because of changes which occur.  A new application is not required even though the request for assistance for the first month is denied.


Example:  A family applies for Food Stamps on the 20th of the month. Income already received in that month causes ineligibility. However, the applicant presents an official notice that employment has been terminated effective the first of the next month. There is no other income available. The request for benefits in the application month is denied, but benefits are granted for the subsequent month without the completion of a new application.


Ongoing income from any and all sources is considered available to meet maintenance needs until such time as the recipient reports, or the agency discovers a change.


Glossary of Terms

Food Stamp Table of Contents