If you live in New York City, have low income, and need help paying for food, you may qualify for New York City Food Stamps (SNAP Benefits). The SNAP Benefits program helps people with low-income with money to buy healthy food. In this post, we are going to cover details on how to apply for SNAP in New York City, including eligibilityincome limits, how much you will get in SNAP benefits if approved, ACCESS HRA details, and what you should know about the New York EBT Card (including where you can use it online to buy groceries).

"How to Apply for SNAP in New York City"

Table of Contents:

  • New York City Food Stamps Program
  • How Does New York City Food Stamps Work?
  • New York City Food Stamps Eligibility Requirements
  • What is the maximum income to qualify for NYC SNAP?
  • How much will I receive in New York City Food Stamps?
  • New York City Food Stamps Application
  • What Happens After I Apply?

New York City SNAP Program

The New York City Food Stamps Program, also known as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), is a federally funded program that provides monthly monetary benefits to low-income households and individuals.

It is an entitlement program, which means that all who are eligible and apply will receive benefits.

Anyone who lives in New York City may apply for food stamp benefits in the city.

If you would like to apply for food stamp benefits in New York City, continue reading below.

The SNAP program is administered at the federal level by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) but is run by the states.

In New York City, the SNAP program is under the Human Resources Administration (HRA), which is part of the Department of Social Services.

New York EBT Card

Each month, SNAP benefits are electronically distributed to eligible recipients on a plastic debit-like card, also known as an Electronic Transfer Benefit (EBT) card.

In New York, the SNAP EBT Card is also known as the Common Benefit Identification Card (CBIC), as shown below.

"New York EBT Card"

EBT cards can be used at a variety of stores throughout New York to purchase eligible food items.

For a complete list of the items you can purchase with your New York EBT Card, check out our post here.

Furthermore, certain categories of New York SNAP recipients can use their EBT benefits to purchase food at approved restaurants and fast food places.

This is under the New York Restaurant Meals program.

See our detailed post about the New York Restaurant Meals program and how to qualify.

Additionally, you can purchase groceries online using your New York SNAP EBT card and have them delivered through the following grocery stores:

  • ALDI
  • Amazon
  • BJs Wholesale Club
  • Ferreira Foodtown
  • Food Bazaar
  • Foodtown-Freshtown
  • Hannaford
  • Manhattan Fruit Market
  • My Foodtown
  • Price Chopper Supermarkets
  • ShopRite
  • Stop & Shop
  • Tops Market
  • Walmart

New York City SNAP Eligibility Guidelines

To be eligible for the New York City SNAP, you have to meet the eligibility requirements established by the USDA.

In order to apply for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) you must first meet a certain criteria.

Do I qualify for New York City Food Stamps?

To qualify for the New York City Food Assistance Program, you must:

  • Be a U.S. Citizen or Legal Non-Citizen
  • Live in New York City
  • Meet the SNAP Income Limit

In addition to the eligibility requirements listed above, your household must also meet the three income and resources tests.

Income is the most important requirement when it comes to qualifying for New York City food stamps.

The three tests include your household’s gross monthly income, net income, and assets.

Gross Monthly Income — is your household’s total income before any deductions. This includes money earned from work and other assistance such as unemployment, Social Security and child support.

Net Income — is your household’s total income after all allowable deductions.

Assets — is your household’s total resources that are considered available to purchase food, such as bank accounts and cash.

To learn more about each of the three SNAP eligibility tests including how to calculate them for your household, continue reading below.

New York City SNAP Income Limits – 2021/2022

Households must meet both a gross and net monthly income limit for their household size.

However, households with a person(s) age 60 years or older or a person with a disability only need to meet the net monthly income limit.

  • Gross income means a SNAP household’s total income before any deductions
  • Net income means a SNAP household’s total gross income minus allowable deductions

Below is the New York City SNAP income limit for 2021/2022.

SNAP Income Eligibility Standards for Fiscal Year 2022
Effective October 1, 2021 – September 30, 2022
Household Size Monthly Net Income (100% of FPL) Monthly Gross Income (130% of FPL)
1 $1,074 $1,396
2 $1,452 $1,888
3 $1,830 $2,379
4 $2,209 $2,871
5 $2,587 $3,363
6 $2,965 $3,855
7 $3,344 $4,347
8 $3,722 $4,838
Each Additional Household Member: +$379 +$492

How to Calculate Your Net Income

Net income for the New York Food Stamps Income Limits is your household’s total gross monthly income minus any allowable expenses.

All allowable expenses should be subtracted from your gross monthly income. To find out what all of the allowable deductions are, continue reading below.

Deductions Allowed for Net Income in 2021

To calculate your net monthly income, you must deduct approved household expenses.

Here are the expenses that can be deducted from your household’s gross income:

Earned Income 20% of gross earnings
Standard
Household Size Deduction Amount
1 – 3 $177
4 $184
5 $215
6 or more $246
Medical Allowable medical expenses incurred by elderly or disabled household members in excess of $35 per household
Dependent Care Payments for the care of a child or other incapacitated adult which are necessary for a household member to work, look for work, or attend school or training
Child Support Allowable for payments of legally obligated child support
Shelter Allowable shelter costs (rent or mortgage, property taxes, insurance on the structure, and utility expenses) in excess of 50% of household income remaining after all other deductions
For households with an elderly or disabled member, there is no limit on the shelter deduction; for all other households, the shelter deduction cannot exceed $597.

New York City SNAP Resources Limit

Households may have $2,250 in countable resources (such as cash or money in a bank account) or $3,500 in countable resources if at least one member of the household is age 60 or older, or is disabled.

However, certain resources are NOT counted when determining eligibility for SNAP:

  • A home and lot;
  • Resources of people who receive Supplemental Security Income (SSI);
  • Resources of people who receive Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF; also known as welfare); and
  • Most retirement and pension plans (withdrawals from these accounts may count as either income or resources depending on how often they occur).

Vehicles

Vehicles count as a resource for SNAP purposes. States determine how vehicles may count toward household resources.

Licensed vehicles are NOT counted if they are:

  • Used for income-producing purposes (e.g., taxi, truck or delivery vehicle);
  • Annually producing income consistent with their fair market value;
  • Needed for long distance travel for work (other than daily commute);
  • Used as the home;
  • Needed to transport a physically disabled household member;
  • Needed to carry most of the household’s fuel or water; or
  • If the sale of the vehicle would result in less than $1500.

For non-excluded licensed vehicles, the fair market value over $4,650 counts as a resource.

Licensed vehicles are also subject to an equity test, which is the fair market value less any amount owed on the vehicle.  The following vehicles are excluded from the equity test:

  • One vehicle per adult household member; and
  • Any other vehicle used by a household member under 18 to drive to work, school, job training, or to look for work.

For vehicles with both a fair market value over $4,650 and an equity value, the greater of the two amounts is counted as a resource.

Additionally, the equity value of unlicensed vehicles generally counts as a resource, with some exceptions.

If you meet the requirements listed above and would like to know how much you can expect to receive in food stamp benefits, continue reading below.

Who is not eligible for Food Stamps in New York City?

Some New York households may not be eligible for SNAP benefits regardless of their income or assets. These people include:

  • All unauthorized immigrants
  • Students attending college more than half time
  • Lawfully present immigrants
  • Individuals who are on strike

Unemployed adults without children in the home who do not have disabilities are limited to three months of SNAP benefits every three years in many areas of the country, and states have broad authority to extend work requirements to many other SNAP households.

For more information on this, please refer to the Food Stamps Work Requirements listed below.

New York City SNAP Work Requirements

If you Able-Bodied Adult Without Dependents (ABAWD) – meaning you are an individual age 18 through 49 who does not live with a child under 18 and is fit for work – then you must comply with the work requirements to continue receiving food stamps.

All SNAP recipients ages 16 to 59 are required to work, unless they meet at least one of these conditions:

  • Responsible for the care of a child under age six;
  • Unable to work due to a physical or mental health condition;
  • Needed to provide care for an incapacitated individual; or
  • Applying for or receiving unemployment insurance benefits; or
  • A student enrolled at least half time in school, a training program, or an institution of higher education; or
  • A regular participant in a drug addiction or alcoholic treatment or rehabilitation program.
  • Employed or self-employed 30 or more hours per week or earning at least the equivalent of 30 times the
    federal minimum wage on a weekly basis.

What are the New York City SNAP requirements?

New York City SNAP recipients that are subject to SNAP work requirements must:

  • Accept suitable employment when referred or offered;
  • Respond to requests from the social services district regarding employment status and
    availability for work;
  • Participate in work activities for up to 30 hours per week, if assigned; and
  • Not voluntarily quit a job or reduce work hours.

To learn more about the work requirements for New York City SNAP work requirements, click here for more information.

How much will I receive in New York City Food Stamps?

The amount of SNAP benefits you will receive depends on your household income and size.

The table below shows the maximum amount you could receive depending on the number of people in your household.

Maximum NYC SNAP Benefit Amount by Household Size for 2021-2022
Effective October 1, 2021 – September 30, 2022
Household Size: Maximum SNAP Benefit Allotment:
1 $250
2 $459
3 $658
4 $835
5 $992
6 $1,190
7 $1,316
8 $1,504
Each Additional Household Member: +$188

To get an accurate count of exactly how much you can expect in SNAP EBT benefits each month, check out our New York Food Stamp Calculator.

What Do I Need to Apply for SNAP in NYC?

While documentation is not needed to apply for SNAP in NYC, you will eventually be asked to verify the information
you provided on your application.

To be found eligible for SNAP you will need to prove the following:

1. Proof of Identity

Acceptable documents include:

  • Photo identification,
  • Driver’s license
  • Passport
  • Social Security Card
  • Naturalization certificate
  • Hospital/ doctor’s records
  • Adoption papers

2. Proof of where you live

Acceptable documents include:

  • Statement from landlord/primary tenant
  • Current rent receipt or lease
  • Mortgage records

3. Proof of Income (if any)

Acceptable documents include:

  • Current pay stubs,
  • Pay envelopes
  • Business records
  • Tax records,
  • Current income tax return, etc.

4. Proof of Current Immigration Status

Acceptable documents include:

  • USCIS documentation

Note: Receiving SNAP benefits will not affect your immigration case or lead to deportation.

How to Apply for SNAP in New York City

There are several options available to you regarding how to apply for SNAP in NYC.

Option 1 – Apply Online

The fastest way to apply for SNAP benefits is to apply electronically online.

For all New York state residents outside NYC, log onto the MyBenefits website and apply online.

NYC residents must log onto the ACCESS HRA site to apply online. Click here to be taken to the site.

If you do not have an ACCESS HRA, see our post on how to create ACCESS HRA Account.

However, if you already have an account, see our post on ACCESS HRA Login help.

Option 2 – At a SNAP Office in Person

You can also apply in person at any NYC SNAP Center or at a participating community-based organization (CBO).

For a SNAP center near you, click here.

To see a list of participating community-based organizations, click here.

Additionally, if you are applying for Cash Assistance you may apply for SNAP Benefits at the same time at an HRA Job Center.

Option 3 – Paper Application

Alternatively, you can apply by mail or fax:

Download the application or call the HRA Infoline at 718-557-1399 to have an application mailed to you.

Fax your completed application to 917-639-1111 or mail it to:

Division of SNAP Services, Mail Application & Referral Unit (MARU)
P.O. Box 24510
Brooklyn, NY, 11201

What Happens After I Apply?

Once you submit a complete application, your caseworker will schedule an interview with you.

The purpose of the interview is to review your application information and ask any questions they may have about the information you submitted.

Generally, a decision will be made on your food stamps application within 30 days of the day you submitted a COMPLETE application.

How to Apply for SNAP in New York City Summary

We hope this post on how to apply for SNAP in New York City was helpful.

If you have further questions about the New York City SNAP, or New York EBT Card, please let us know in the comments section below.

Be sure to check out our other articles about New York SNAP and New York EBT, including:
New York to Get 25% SNAP Increase
Get Free Admissions with New York EBT Card
New York P-EBT Extension for 2021
How to Get a Free Phone With New York Food Stamps

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