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Learn more about SNAP from answers to these frequently asked questions.

Frequently Asked Questions

All types of people receive SNAP benefits — single adults, families, seniors, and working people. Many people who do not have children are eligible for SNAP benefits.

Eligibility is based primarily on household income and certain expenses. Learn more and see if you are eligible by calling Project Bread's FoodSource Hotline at 1-800-645-8333.

Certain non-citizens who are not currently eligible for federal SNAP benefits because of their immigration status may be eligible for this supplement. The State SNAP Supplement rules regarding income, household size, and other circumstances are the same as federal SNAP.  

SNAP eligibility is based on who is in the household, your income, and certain expenses. “Eligibility” means who can and can’t get the benefit. 

To learn more, visit mass.gov.

If you are in a one-person household and already get SNAP benefits, you can not get the State SNAP supplement.  

If your household has people who do not get federal SNAP, your household may get the State SNAP Supplement. This depends on your individual household circumstances. 

No, SNAP benefits will remain on your EBT card for 274 days (9 months).

To be eligible for expedited benefits, you must meet one of these three criteria:

  1. Income and money in the bank add up to less than the monthly housing expenses
  2. Monthly income is less than $150, and money in the bank is less than $100
  3. The applicant is a migrant worker, and money in the bank is less than $100. If you are eligible for expedited, DTA has to issue you SNAP within 7 days from the date of your application - and make sure you have an EBT card within 7 days.


We suggest you call 1-877-382-2363 (press 7), go in person to your local DTA office, or go to DTAConnect.com to apply.

During the COVID-19 public health emergency, all SNAP households have been receiving  temporary extra COVID SNAP benefits. The extra COVID SNAP benefits, also known as SNAP Emergency Allotments, are the difference between your normal benefit amount and the maximum amount for your household size. However, recent action by Congress is ending these additional federal benefits.

Massachusetts has passed a state supplemental budget providing an additional SNAP benefit allotment at a total of up to 40% of your previous extra COVID SNAP benefit amount for 3 months. The state-funded extra SNAP benefits will be available in the beginning of April, May, and June 2023 for the prior month. For example, households eligible for SNAP in March will receive the extra SNAP in early April. The payment amount will equal up to 40% of the difference between a household’s maximum benefit amount for their household size and their regular monthly benefit amount, with a minimum amount of $38 a month.

The state-funded extra SNAP benefits will be distributed on the following dates: April 7, May 2, June 2.

The state has a dedicated website, Mass.gov/ExtraCOVIDSNAP, to provide information on the state-funded extra benefits and help households plan for the end of the temporary federal and state benefits.

If you are currently getting SNAP you have likely already received or will receive a text from the Department of Transitional Assistance (DTA) and a letter in the mail informing you about these changes. This change is not the result of any actions on your part, nor is it a penalty for anything you’ve done. You are still enrolled in SNAP and your eligibility has not changed. However, if you would like to get re-screened for SNAP to see if you are eligible for more benefits, you can reach out to our FoodSource Hotline or send us a chat message today.

No. You do not need to be working in order to apply for or be eligible for SNAP.  

No. In fact, the costs associated with owning your home are used as deductions in determining your eligibility.

Yes. Many non-citizens are eligible for SNAP. Receiving SNAP will have no impact on your application for citizenship and/or a green card. It is safe to apply for SNAP! If you do not have documented immigration status, you will not be able to apply for yourself, but you may be able to apply for other eligible household members. Children born in the US may receive benefits even if their parents do not have documentation. Learn more about SNAP benefits for immigrants.

Certain non-citizens who are not currently eligible for federal SNAP benefits because of their immigration status may now be eligible for a state-funded SNAP supplement. Learn more about the State SNAP Supplement.

Yes. A permanent address is not required to apply for SNAP. You can get benefits whether you live on the street, are staying in a shelter, or are living with family or friends on a temporary basis. Homeless individuals and families who do not have regular shelter expenses can claim an automatic deduction from their income.

No. You can begin an application over the phone by calling Project Bread's toll-free FoodSource Hotline at 1-800-645-8333.

You may also mail or fax your application to DTA or apply online at DTAConnect.org

If you live with roomates, and...

  • you DO buy and prepare most of your food with the people you live with, you are considered a household. You WOULD apply together for SNAP as a household and WOULD put all their names on the application.
  • DO NOT prepare most of your food together, you would apply as an individual,  and would NOT put their names on the application.

Some people must always apply together, including spouses and children under 22 living with a parent or step-parent.

You can check the status of your SNAP application:

If you are approved for SNAP: you will receive your benefits within 30 days.

If you are approved for expidited/emergency SNAP: you will receive your beneifts within 7 days. 

When you apply for SNAP and don’t already have an EBT card, DTA should send you an EBT card by mail. The card may arrive before your application is processed and therefore have a $0 balance. Benefits will be added to the card once your application is fully processed, which an take up to 30 days.

No. SNAP benefits are not considered income.

Yes. SNAP benefits are only for food. However, some people also use their DTA EBT card for EAEDC or have an EBT card for their TAFDC (cash assistance) benefits. You can use TAFDC or EAEDC benefits to purchase food and non-food items.

For information or to apply for on TAFDC or EAEDC eligibility, call your local DTA office or go to contact your local DTA office. You can check your eligibility and apply for TAFDC or EAEDC at www.DTAconnect.com

Project Bread is an official SNAP Outreach Partner of The Department of Transitional Assistance (DTA).

As a SNAP Outreach Partner of DTA, Project Bread's role is to make it easier for people in Massachusetts to get SNAP and help anyone having trouble applying.