Low-income families in the United States can receive assistance with purchasing food through the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP). SNAP, or food stamps, provides monthly benefits that can be used at authorized dealers within your state. If you are unsure whether you qualify for food stamps benefits, you can use an online tool provided by the U.S. Department of Agriculture to prescreen for eligibility. The tool can provide you with an estimate of your monthly benefits if you qualify.
Visit the U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) website and access the “Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program Pre-Screening Eligibility Tool.”
Click “Start Tool” and select your state from the drop-down menu. Select the user and how you heard about the tool. Click “Continue.” Depending on your state, you may be redirected to your state's eligibility tool. The tool for each state is similar to the model used by the USDA.
Enter the requested additional information when prompted by the tool. You may be required to provide details concerning your income and members of your household. Click “Continue” to advance through each section.
Review the results of your eligibility screening. If you are eligible for benefits, the amount you may qualify for is displayed in the results.
Even if you prequalify for food stamps benefits, you still need to apply for assistance. Contact your state's SNAP hotline number for information on how to apply.