The food stamp program, recently re-named SNAP, and cash assistance, also known as the Family Independence Program (FIP), are available on a state level, but are funded by the federal government. The programs offer assistance to families experiencing financial duress, enabling them to continue buying healthy food and necessary items.
Gross Income, Food
The gross income limits for food stamp eligibility depends on how many people are living in the household, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture. As of 2011, the maximum gross, monthly income amount for a single-person household is $1,174. For three people it is $1,984. For a family of five it is $2,794.
Net Income, Food
The net income is the money left after taxes and deductions have been withheld. As of 2011, the maximum net amount a person can make and still qualify for food stamps is $903 monthly. For a family of four it is $1,838.
Resources, Cash Assistance
Only cash resources are counted when considering an applicant's eligibility for FIP, according to the Michigan Department of Human Services. Things such as cash, investments and retirement are considered. The limit on these combined is $3,000.
Other Cash Requirements
Cash assistance programs are temporary. Unless your circumstances are exceptional, you can't receive cash assistance for longer than two years in your lifetime. The children in the home must be under 18. A single person can sometimes qualify, such as a pregnant woman. Applicants must be U.S. citizens or legal immigrants. Your home, car and personal belongings are not counted as income or resources.
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