What Other Benefits : Today more and more individuals and families are applying for food stamps due to low income or loss of job. It’s important to know the ins and outs of food stamp application and what to expect. Depending on your state, income, or lack there of, is applied to your application on a percentage basis. You will need to check with your state of employment to find out just exactly what the percentage rate is when applying.
Essentially it is required that the maximum gross of your income, approximately 130% of the federal poverty level (FPL) will be applied, unless you have an elderly or disabled person living with you. In this case it is raised to 165% of the FPL.
A standard deduction per family will be $134 for a household of up to 3 people, $143 for 4 persons, $167 for 5 persons and for 6 people it goes up to $191. If the expense of your home or shelter is above your 50% mark of income then this is taken into consideration as well. It is important to make sure you are completely honest in your accounting of shelter expenses including utilities. A current allowance on utilities amounts to $274 per month based on federal law. If you are paying two or more different utility companies this is also beneficial as it will make you eligible for a Limited Utility Allowance (LUA) of approximately $79 per month in conjunction with your food stamps.
What Other Benefits Other things to bring up at the time of food stamp application are, your number of dependants and medical deductions. Make sure you report all income, however there are certain types that you will find exempt such as, deferred educational loans, cash donations, and irregular received income which is aside from your regular job income.
What Other Benefits Although federally mandated, each state handles qualifying regulations in their own way. Make sure when you apply that you ask the right questions outlined above and any others that you might have.
Bottom-line is that there is much more to consider at the time of finding out if you qualify for food stamps. Applying because you find yourself underwater with expense vs. income is just the tip of the iceberg. The federal government has various programs in conjunction with their food stamp program to help an individual or family until they are back on their feet. Keep in mind that food stamp application is an honor program, don’t abuse it.