To be included in the SNAP household, a student must meet at least one of the following criteria:
Under age 18 or
7 CFR § 273.5(b)
Age 50 or older
Physically or mentally unfit
NOTE: Verification is required when the unfitness is not evident to the CAO. Verification may be either proof that the student gets a disability benefit or a statement from a physician or a licensed or certified psychologist.
Attending high school
Responsible for the care of a dependent household member under age 6
7 CFR § 273.5(b)(8)
Responsible for the care of a dependent household member older than 5 but under age 12 if adequate child care is not available for the student to attend class and satisfy the 20-hour weekly work requirement or participate in a state or federally financed work-study program during the regular school year
7 CFR § 273.5(b)(9)
Participating in an on-the-job-training program
7 CFR § 273.5(b)(7)
Working 20 hours a week or self-employed with weekly earnings equal to at least 20 hours times the federal minimum hourly wage or participating in a state or federally financed work-study program during the regular school year
7 CFR § 273.5(b)
NOTE: Earnings do not have to be countable for a student to be eligible. For example, a student with excluded earnings from a temporary census job may qualify as an eligible student.
Participating in a work-study program under Title IV of the Higher Education Act of 1965
Receiving TANF benefits
Attending a school or training program that is not an institution of higher education
Enrolled in an institution of higher education less than half-time, as determined by the institution
Enrolled full-time in an institution of higher education, as determined by the institution, and a single parent responsible for the care of a dependent child under age 12, regardless of the availability of adequate child care
7 CFR § 273.5(b)(10
Enrolled in an institution of higher education through or to comply with the requirements of any of the following:
The Workforce Investment Act (WIA) program
The Food Stamp Act Employment and Training (E&T) program
The Trade Act of 1974 (Section 236) program
NOTE: An institution of higher education is any educational institution that normally requires a high school diploma or equivalency certificate for enrollment. Institutes of higher education include colleges, universities, and post–high school vocational or technical schools.
7 CFR § 273.5(a)
Students who are enrolled at least half-time in an institution of higher education and do not meet one of the above requirements are ineligible for SNAP.
Students who meet one of the requirements above and buy a meal plan that gives them more than half of their weekly meals are ineligible for SNAP.
A student’s enrollment begins on the first day of the school term.
A student's enrollment ends upon graduation, suspension, expulsion, dropping out, or not intending to register for the next normal school term.
7 CFR § 273.5(c)
A student who was enrolled during the spring term and intends to enroll for the fall term is considered enrolled during summer vacation, even though he or she is not attending school. Summer school is not considered a normal school term.
Enrollment status continues when a student graduates and intends to enroll in a new course of study for the next normal school term.
Example: A student who graduates in June and intends to enroll in graduate school in the fall is considered enrolled during summer vacation.
NOTE: An unpaid internship does not fulfill the requirements for SNAP eligibility.
Reissued March 1, 2012, replacing October 25, 2008