Can I Lose my SSDI If I Apply for SNAP?
Many people who receive income from an SSDI claim worry that this may be jeopardized by filing for SNAP (the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program also known as food stamps). Let’s clarify what all of this means before digging further into the topic. SSDI is not granted based on limited income. It is based on your having worked in the past and paying into Social Security taxes. It is also based on a medical condition that the SSA (Social Security Administration) deems a disability.
SNAP, on the other hand, is based on limited income and financial resources. It is overseen by the USDA (United States Department of Agriculture), and it is always applied for at the state level. SNAP eligibility varies from state to state, and you must meet your state’s income and resource limits in order to qualify for SNAP benefits.
To put it as plainly as possible – if you have SSDI income and you qualify for SNAP because of that limited income (and resources), you get both resources. If you make too much from SSDI based on state guidelines, you won’t get the SNAP, but your SSDI is never at risk.
The good news is that many states have special rules for those who are disabled. As an example, if you are receiving SSDI benefits, SNAP also deems you disabled and reduces your income by the amount you are forced to spend towards medical needs.
Additionally, although SNAP is applied for as a household (and it is the household that has to qualify), there are special rules for households in which there are elderly or disabled members.
For example, if someone is over 60 and unable to prepare or buy meals because of their permanent disability, they are a separate household, according to SNAP. This is particularly true if the others in the household have little income.
The USDA says that most “SNAP households must meet both the gross and net income limits or they are not eligible for SNAP and cannot receive benefits. However, a household with an elderly or disabled person only has to meet the net income test.”
This simply takes all gross income and deducts allowable deductions. Any household in which all members have SSI is automatically deemed eligible for SNAP. Net monthly income is capped at rates between $1041 and $3251 depending on number in a household.
Limits and Guidelines
Generally, SNAP is awarded to those who meet the income and resource limits. They include having $2250 or less in cash on hand or $3500 or less in countable resources. Recipients can own a home. Their SSI is not counted in this income or resource list, and most retirement and pension plans are not counted within the income or resources. Vehicles are counted as a resource, but some exceptions apply.
Are you receiving SSDI and concerned that your SNAP application may cause a problem? Don’t worry – it doesn’t. However, you do want to get the most out of your SNAP benefits, too and the experts at Disability Help Center San Diego is here to help.