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Food Stamp Program Eligibility
Eligibility for this program depends upon income, resources, and expenses. Households with a member who is elderly or disabled need only meet the net income requirement. If all members of the household receive Supplemental Security Income (SSI), Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) financial assistance, and/or State Supplement (Old Age Assistance, Aid to the Needy Blind, Aid to the Permanently and Totally Disabled), there are no income or resource requirements at all.

General Requirements

Citizenship Status/Immigration & Identity: You must be either a US citizen or an eligible qualified alien and you must be who you say you are.

Residency: You must be a current resident of NH, but you do not need to have lived here, or intend to live here, for any specified length of time. If you are homeless you may still be eligible for assistance.

Social Security Number (SSN): The law requires that you furnish an SSN or verification of an application for an SSN if one has never been issued or you cannot provide the numbers for all household members.

Living Arrangement: You must be prepared to describe your living situation to us. We will need to know if you are living on your own or if you are married. If you are living with others, we will need to know the size of your household, if you are living in a group home situation, and what arrangements you have made for purchasing and preparing meals.

Financial Requirements

Financial requirements are broken into two components: income and resources. You are considered financially eligible for the Food Stamp Program if both income and resource requirements are met.

Household Income: All available income for all members of your household is counted when we determine your eligibility for Food Stamp benefits. However, we subtract certain expenses from that total. If, after subtracting your expenses, your total net income equals or falls below the monthly net income limits for the number of people in your household, you are considered income-eligible. Please see the DFA Net Monthly Income Limits Adobe Acrobat Reader Symbol for the specific income requirements for the Food Stamp Program.

Household Resources: All resources you and members of your household own are considered when determining eligibility. Examples of resources are cash, bank accounts, stocks, bonds, permanently unoccupied real estate, and some trusts. We do not count certain resources, such as the home you are living in, your furniture, and certain vehicles. If, after counting or excluding your household's resources, your total countable resources equal or fall below the resource limit, you are considered resource-eligible. Please see the DFA Program Fact Sheet Adobe Acrobat Reader Symbol for the specific resource requirements for the Food Stamp Program.

Household Expenses: Certain household expenses can be subtracted from income that is available or considered to be available to the assistance group.

  • Shelter & Utilities - Deductions for shelter costs including rent, mortgage, property tax, and condo fees may be subtracted from your income. Utility costs such as costs for heat, water and sewer, well, septic system, phones, internet service (including mobile data), electricity, and trash collection may also be deducted, if the costs are incurred separately from rent or mortgage.
  • Child Care - The actual verified un-reimbursed cost of care for a dependent child or incapacitated parent may also be subtracted from the individual's adjusted gross income. Unreimbursed costs are total costs minus any reimbursements made by non-assistance group members. The maximum allowable childcare deduction limits are $200 for care for a child under 2 years old and $175 for over 2 years old.
  • Legally binding child support payments - are also allowed as a deduction in net income computations if the applicant is paying them to a non-household member, including repayment of arrearages.
  • Self-Employment Expenses - Actual costs of doing business may be subtracted from self-employment income to arrive at countable self-employment income, which is then added to other household income.
  • Medical Expenses for Elders and Disabled - Verified un-reimbursed medical expenses in excess of $35 per month and incurred by household members who are elderly or disabled, may be subtracted.

What Happens Now?

If you meet the requirements above and think your income and resources are close to the figures provided, and wish to apply for the Food Stamp program, you can apply for Food Stamps online at: or you can visit our application page to find out about the other ways to apply.

Please Note: If you are homeless or have little money to cover your current expenses, you may be eligible to receive your assistance within 7 days, if not sooner, and may not have to provide certain proofs until a later time. Do not hesitate to apply for Food Stamp benefits. Your eligibility begins the day you apply and you will receive benefits even for partial months.

Right to an Administrative Appeal Hearing

If you disagree with any decision the Division of Family Assistance makes on your case, you may request an Administrative Appeals hearing.


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New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services
129 Pleasant Street | Concord, NH | 03301-3852

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