DSS: Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program - Guidelines

Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program - Guidelines

The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), formerly known as the Food Stamp Program, is a nutrition program that helps low-income individuals and families buy food. SNAP also provides education about nutrition to help recipients choose foods that enhance their health and well being.

Income Limits

To receive SNAP benefits in Connecticut, household income and other resources have to be under certain limits and are reviewed. For some households, there is also an asset limit.

The income standards for SNAP are based the federal poverty levels (FPL). All income standards listed in the following table below are monthly figures. There are gross and net income limits.  The  gross income limit is equal to 185% of the current Federal Poverty Level and is the amount of income the household has before taxes and deductions. The gross income limit applies to most households. The gross income limit does not apply to households in which at least one person is 60 years of age or older, or receives disability income. However, all households are subject to a monthly  net income limit. The net income limit is equal to the current Federal Poverty Level and is the amount left over after certain deductions are allowed. These deductions are established by the USDA Food and Nutrition Service. Details can be found on their website at http://www.fns.usda.gov/SNAP/.

Effective October 1, 2016, the gross monthly income limits and net monthly income limits are as listed below.

Monthly Income Limits

Household Size


Gross Income Limit

(applies to most households, except those in which at least one person is 60 years of age  or older, or  receives disability income) 

Net Income Limit

(applies to ALL households)













Asset Limits

There is no asset limit EXCEPT for households whose gross income is more than 185% of the Federal Poverty Level. For those households, total assets including cash, savings accounts, stocks and bonds cannot be more than $3250. We do not include the home the client lives in as an asset, nor do we put a lien on the home.  We also do not count vehicles or retirement accounts, such as IRAs. Again, these asset limits only apply to households whose gross income is more than 185% of the Federal Poverty Level.

A "household" is all the people who live together and buy and prepare food together. Once a household meets the eligibility requirements, we calculate the amount of the household’s SNAP benefit based on the household’s income and certain allowable deductions for shelter, dependent care expenses, medical costs and child support payments to others outside the household.  Shelter costs are rent and mortgage payments, heating or cooling not included in rent, and utility and monthly telephone services charges. 

SNAP Benefit Amounts

As of October 1, 2016, the maximum SNAP benefit amounts are listed in the table below. The maximum benefit amounts are effective indefinitely. 

For a household of:   the maximum SNAP benefit is: 


 $194 monthly 
 2  $357 monthly 
 3 $511 monthly
 4 $649 monthly

For more information about income limits and benefit amounts for households of 5 or more, or for any other information about SNAP, please call [800] 842-1508.


To find out if you may be eligible for SNAP based on income, follow this link: End Hunger Connecticut's SNAP Prescreener


Content Last Modified on 4/19/2017 10:54:59 AM