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SNAP Time Limit Rules

SNAP Time Limit Rules

DHS resumed the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) Time Limit Rules on July 1, 2023.

SNAP recipients ages 18 through 52 who do not live with a child under 18, and who are considered physically and mentally able to work must follow the Time Limit Rules. This is often called the Able-Bodied Adult Without Dependents (ABAWD) work requirement.

SNAP recipients in these categories can only get SNAP benefits for 3 months in 3 years unless they meet the Time Limit Rules.

Frequently Asked Questions

What do SNAP recipients need to do?

SNAP recipients ages 18 through 52 who do not live with a child under 18, and who are considered physically and mentally able to work must follow these Time Limit Rules to keep your SNAP benefits:

  • Spend at least 80 hours each month doing one or more of the following activities:

OR

  • Participate in workfare for the number of hours you are assigned each month.

SNAP recipients who qualify for this program should tell DHS if they are already doing one of these things, or if they begin doing one of these things. They can do so by calling their local county office.

If work hours drop below 80 hours a month, the recipient will need to call a local county office within 10 days. The recipient may need to provide paystubs or a letter from an employer.

Does everyone need to meet these Time Limit Rules?

SNAP recipients may not have to follow any of these Time Limit Rules if they are:

  • Homeless
  • A veteran
  • Aged 24 or younger and were in foster care in any state at the age of 18
  • Younger than age 18, or age 53 or older,
  • Living with someone in the same house who is younger than age 18,
  • Not working because of a physical or mental health reason, OR
  • Pregnant
  • Taking care of a child younger than age 6 or someone who needs helps caring for themselves
  • Already working at least 30 hours a week,
  • Already earning $217.50 or more per week,
  • Getting unemployment benefits, or have applied for unemployment benefits,
  • Going to school, college, or training program at least half time,
  • Meeting the work rules for Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF), or
  • Participating in a drug or alcohol addiction treatment program.

What should you do if you think one of these reasons applies to you?

Call your local county office as soon as possible if you think one of these might describe you. If DHS finds that it does, you will not need to follow these Time Limit Rules.

What happens if you do not follow these Time Limit Rules?

DHS will count each full month that you receive SNAP benefits but do not meet these Time Limit Rules without a good reason. Once DHS has counted 3 full months, you will lose your benefits until you begin complying with the program rules or become exempt.

What if you have a good reason for not following these Time Limit Rules?

Call your local county office if you think you have a good reason for not following these Time Limit Rules. Good reasons include issues you can’t control such as getting sick or not having transportation. These are some examples of good reasons, but there are others, too. If DHS determines that you have a good reason, there will be no change to your SNAP benefits.

What if you have a good reason for not following these Time Limit Rules?

Congress suspended these rules because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Now, the COVID-19 Federal public health emergency has ended, and the Time Limit Rules are back in effect.