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Learn About South Dakota Food Stamps Requirements

What factors influence your food stamps eligibility in South Dakota? Generally, the most important requirement is that your income does not exceed a certain limit. However, you must meet all the eligibility requirements in order to receive benefits from the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), including residency, citizenship and work requirements.

If you meet the SD food stamp qualifications, you may be entitled to a monthly benefit allotment. In this case, you must understand how to maintain your eligibility. Continue reading below to learn more about the requirements of the SNAP program.

Citizenship and Residency Requirements for SNAP in South Dakota

One of the first steps to meeting SNAP eligibility in South Dakota is to meet the state residency requirements. In general, you must live in the state in order to apply for benefits through a Social Services office. Moreover, you may only qualify for benefits if you are a U.S. citizen, a lawful permanent resident (LPR) or legally present in the country.

If you are a non-citizen, you may be required to wait at least five years before you can apply. This rule was established by the Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act (PRWORA), and applies to you if you are:

  • An LPR and have been credited, or can be credited, with at least 40 hours of work in the U.S.
  • A non-citizen who has been granted conditional entry
  • A non-citizen who has been paroled for at least one year

In addition, other non-citizens who wish to qualify for food stamps must wait five years before applying. On the other hand, if you are a refugee, you may be able to apply for the program without waiting five years. Other applicants who do not have to follow the five-year rule include:

  • Asylum seekers
  • Children who are 17 years of age or younger
  • Victims of human trafficking, as required by the Trafficking Victims Protection Act
  • Iraqi and Afghan special immigrants
  • LPRs who participate in a different federal assistance program that gives them monetary benefits
  • LPRs with a military connection, such as veterans, the spouses of veterans and the children of veterans

Keep in mind that as long as you are a legal non-citizen, your immigration status should not have a negative impact on your eligibility.

What are the SNAP income guidelines in South Dakota?

It may be useful to use a SNAP calculator before filling out an application. These calculators, which are often called pre-screening eligibility tools, may help you determine your chances of receiving benefits.

The screening tool offered by the Federal Nutrition Service (FNS) asks you questions about your household, monthly income and resources. Then, it uses your answers to predict your eligibility. For example, you may be asked the following questions:

  • How many people are in your household?
  • What is the age of each household member?
  • Do any household members have a disability?
  • What is your gross monthly income?

By using a calculator before filling out an application, you will have a better idea of whether applying for the program is worth your time. Reviewing the SNAP income guidelines for South Dakota will help you understand how the pre-screening tool determines your eligibility.

In order to qualify for the program, your gross monthly income must not exceed a certain limit. More specifically, the limit that applies to you will depend on the size of your household. As an example, a four-person household must have a gross monthly income no greater than $2,720. Their net monthly income, which is determined after making allowable deductions, must not exceed $2,092.

The SNAP income guidelines for 2019 also state that seniors may have different income requirements. As an example, if an applicant is 60 years of age or older, he or she only needs to pay attention to the net income requirement.

Seniors and applicants with disabilities are also allowed to make a deduction for medical expenses. However, this deduction only applies if out-of-pocket expenses are greater than $35 per month.

According to the income requirements for food stamps in South Dakota, all applicants are allowed to make a 20 percent deduction from their earned income. They can also take a standard deduction, the size of which will depend on their household. For example, a three-person household may make a standard deduction of $164.

In addition, you are allowed to make a dependent care deduction if you take care of children, an elderly household member or a household member who has a disability. Finally, you may take an excess shelter costs deduction if your household expenses are greater than half of your income. Applicable household expenses include rent, mortgage payments and utility bills.

It is also worth mentioning that shelter deductions are capped, and that certain shelter expenses may not be factored into the calculation. Learn more about income requirements by downloading our SNAP guide.

Other Important Food Stamps Qualifications in South Dakota

After learning how to qualify for food stamps in SD based on your income, you must learn how to qualify based on your assets. According to federal guidelines, you may qualify for benefits if your countable resources are worth less than $2,250 in total. If you have a disability or are a senior, your resource limit will be higher. The following types of resources may be considered in this calculation:

  • Cash on hand or in a bank account
  • Stocks and bonds
  • Vehicles
  • Real estate

In addition, the food stamps qualifications state that you must meet certain work requirements if you are an able-bodied adult without dependents (ABAWD). In this case, you must be registered to work, and you may not voluntarily leave your job or reduce your weekly hours.

If you are a part-time student who wishes to receive benefits, you may be required to hold a part-time job. Otherwise, if you are a full-time student, you may not be required to hold a job, depending on the circumstances.

How do you maintain your food stamps in South Dakota?

According to the rules of the program, you may lose your SNAP eligibility at any time if you no longer meet the requirements. As a result, it is important to follow the rules and guidelines established by the state Department of Human Services (DHS) and the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

For instance, you may only buy approved food items with your benefits, and you are not allowed to sell your benefits. Find out other ways to maintain your benefits when you download our free guide.