Texas food stamps help individuals and families supplement their diet and low income without shame or ridicule.
About the Texas Food Stamp Program
The state of Texas has a new name for its food stamp program: Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or SNAP. Despite the updated moniker, the program's goal remains the same: to aid financially-challenged Texans so they can purchase nutritious food to sustain a healthy lifestyle.
In addition, the program's name change does not reflect a modification in administration. Texas Health and Human Services still screens potential recipients and aids in the distribution of funds. Likewise, the United States Department of Agriculture still establishes all eligibility and certification policies.
In order to determine eligibility for food stamp benefits you will need to show proof of the following:
- Employment services
- Work requirement (for individuals age 18-50)
- Social Security numbers
If you are deemed eligible for food stamps in Texas, you will be given an electronic debit card called the Lone Star Card. Each month your approved monthly food stamp benefits will be added to the card. You can then use the card like a credit or debit card at any store that accepts food stamps.
How Do I Apply for Texas Food Stamps?
Applications for SNAP benefits can be obtained from local Health and Human Services offices. In addition, if you have access to a computer, you can visit SNAP's website to see if you qualify for food stamps. The tool calculates your income and resources and determines whether you meet the financial criteria to obtain food stamps in Texas.
If you decide to use the electronic tool, keep in mind that it simply estimates how much aid you may be eligible to receive. It is not an application for food stamps. Rather, it pre-screens applicants. You must work with your local Department of Health and Human Services office to confirm your eligibility for SNAP benefits. As a part of the application process, a case worker at the office will conduct a face-to-face interview with you, in which you will be required to show proof of all necessary documents. To expedite the interview it is advisable to complete the paper application prior to your appointment.
If you are in dire straits, there is a way to obtain Texas food stamps quickly. Emergency SNAP benefits are allocated to the following:
- Families with resources worth $100 or less, and monthly income less than $150.
- Families with resources and monthly incomes that are less than their current expenses for rent/mortgage and utilities.
- Migrant or seasonal farm workers who have $100 or less in resources and income.
To apply for emergency food stamps in Texas you can call or visit the nearest Texas Health and Human Services office.
You can continue to receive SNAP benefits for as long as you meet the program's requirements. Most SNAP recipients are sent out a renewal application every six months. However, that time period is subject to change depending on your individual status. For example if you are between the ages of 18 and 50 and you do not have a child living in your household, your Texas food stamp benefits are limited to three months in a three-year period. Though, this too is subject to change if you can prove that you work at least 20 hours a week or you are participating in a job-training program.
The SNAP program has a list of caveats and exceptions that make it virtually impossible to automatically determine your eligibility. That is why it is critical for you to contact your local Health and Human Services office prior to applying for SNAP benefits.