Am I eligible for SNAP benefits if I’m unemployed due to COVID-19?

The additional $600 in unemployment benefits is ending this week. Meanwhile, talks about possibly extending the program are still up in the air. If you were ineligible to receive SNAP benefits (also known as food stamps) because of the extra $600/week, you may now qualify to receive them. College and graduate students and those on SSI benefits may also be eligible to apply for the SNAP program. It never hurts to be prepared and see what benefits are available to you.

The SNAP application process depends on the state you live in. So use this map directory to find your state’s application. From start to finish, the application process can take as little as a few days. It should take no more than 30 days. But if you need immediate food assistance, Feeding America can help you find food banks in your area. If you do not have access to the internet or would rather complete the application over the phone, the phone number for SNAP benefits is (800) 221-5689.

According to this New York Times article, you will have to “pass both income tests and asset tests, though households with elderly or disabled people may face less strict rules.” You will also need to pass one or both of the work requirements, depending on your situation: the General Work Requirement and the Able Bodied Adult Without Dependents (ABAWD) Requirement. To give you a sense of how much you can receive on SNAP, “[the] maximum monthly allotment for a one-person household is $194 [and] for a family of four, the cap is $646.”


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