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Since 1974, California has been the only state to prevent seniors and disabled people from getting Social Security and food stamps benefits at the same time. Fortunately, that law is changing!
This new law, which allows California residents to receive both Social Security and food stamps, takes effect on June 1, 2019.
For affected households, it’s important to know that their SSI and SSP benefit amounts are not changing. The CalFresh benefits will not count as income toward the SSI/SSP benefit, either.
This law affects two different categories of people:
Of course, it affects SSI/SSP recipients who are not getting food stamps at all. These individuals and households can now apply for CalFresh benefits!
However, it also affects Social Security recipients who live in households with other people who receive food stamps. Previously, anyone who received Social Security benefits was excluded from their household’s award. Now, they can be included in the food stamps benefits but their Social Security income will count toward the household’s total income for food stamps. This may lead to a reduction or loss of CalFresh benefits, but the state may be able to compensate for this through the state-funded Supplemental Nutrition Benefits or Transitional Nutrition Benefits programs.
If you get Social Security, you can apply for food stamps on June 1!
Starting on June 1, 2019, eligible households can apply for CalFresh food stamps online. The application takes about 10 minutes and you will receive your benefits within 30 days.
You could receive your food stamps within three days if you qualify for Expedited Service. In order to do this, you need to meet one of these criteria:
- Your household earns less than $150/month and has less than $100 available to you right now.
- Your household’s income is less than your combined rent and utilities.
- You are a migrant or seasonal farm worker with less than $100 available to you right now.
Don’t forget all the other amazing benefits you can get with food stamps!
If you’ll be getting food stamps for the first time, be sure to check out this list of 450+ freebies and deals you can get with an EBT card! You could save money on everything from Amazon Prime to zoo admission!