Program DescriptionSupplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) provides food assistance benefits that help low income households buy the food they need for good health. The amount of food assistance benefits each household receives is based on the Thrifty Food Plan, the model diet plan the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) uses to project the cost of food for one month for different household sizes. Under SNAP rules, resources- such as bank accounts, cash real estate, personal property, vehicles, and so forth- are considered in determining whether a household is eligible to get SNAP. Some resources are counted toward the allowable limit and some are not. The SNAP worker will explain which are counted. The resources of people who get public assistance, SSI, and, in some locations, general assistance is not counted toward the limit.
General Program RequirementsIn order to qualify for this benefit program, you must be a resident of the state of Maine and fall into one of two groups: (1) those with a current bank balance (savings and checking combined) under $2,001, or (2) those with a current bank balance (savings and checking combined) under $3,001 who share their household with a person or persons age 60 and over, or with a person with a disability (a child, your spouse, a parent, or yourself). For either group, you must also have an annual household income of less than $14,079 if one person lives in the household; $18,941 if two people live in the household; $23,803 if three people live in the household; $28,665 if four people live in the household; $33,527 if five people live in the household; $38,389 if six people live in the household; $43,251 if seven people live in the household; or $48,113 if eight people live in the household. For larger households, add $4,862 for each additional person in the home.
All households may have up to $2,000 worth of countable resources and still be eligible. Households may have up to $3,000 and still be eligible if at least one member is age 60 or older. Most households must have income at or below certain dollar limits before and after deductions are allowed. However, households in which all members are getting public assistance or SSI (or, in some locations, general assistance) do not have to meet the income eligibility tests.
Your Next StepsThe following information will lead you to the next steps to apply for this benefit.
Application ProcessTo apply for this program, download and fill out an application:
Next, return the application to your local Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) office via email or fax, or in person. To locate your nearest DHHS Office, visit:
Return your application as soon as possible. If you qualify, benefits start from the date you turn in your application. Additionally, if you qualify, you can receive SNAP benefits within 30 days.