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Millions of Americans have had their lives upended seemingly overnight and have suddenly found themselves in need of assistance for possibly the first time in their lives.
Legislation making its way through Congress provides $15 billion in additional funding for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), otherwise known as Food Stamps. The additional money will help ensure the program will be able to assist people who were recently laid off or furloughed suddenly.
For many people, this will be the first time they have applied for Food Stamps and the application process will be new to them. To start off, you will need to begin the application process by visiting your states SNAP website. That is because SNAP is a Federal program run by the individual states.
You will be asked to provide proof of identity of all members of your household, proof of income, and proof of residence. *Note* some states will require you to submit additional documentation. Refer to your states application for more information.
After you submit your application you will be interviewed by an employee of your states Department of Health Services (or equivalent) who will determine whether you are eligible for benefits. If your application is approved then your benefits will be effective based off your application date.
These are certainly unique and scary times, but the SNAP program can be a vital tool for individuals and families who suddenly found themselves in need of assistance.