39. How do I show DTA I am disabled?

Under the SNAP rules, you are considered to be disabled if you receive any of the following federal, state or private (pension) benefits:

  • Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits or Social Security Disability benefits,
  • DTA cash assistance based on a severe disability,
  • Certain disability pensions or railroad retirement benefits,
  • Veteran’s disability benefits or benefits for a spouse or children, depending on severity of disability, or
  • Special MassHealth coverage based on a disability determination, see below).

Cash Assistance Disability Determinations

If you receive EAEDC, in order to meet the SNAP disability criteria, you must meet the SSI standards of disability. To show DTA you are severely disabled and you have applied for or receive EAEDC, DTA will ask you to complete an “EAEDC Medical Provider Statement” form. The form asks a medical provider to explain if your disability will last for 12 months or more or result in death. If they say yes, then DTA should list you as meeting the SNAP disability criteria in your case record. If you receive TAFDC cash benefits and are a disabled parent or child who does not receive SSI, contact MLRI at info@masslegalservices.org.

MassHealth Disability Determinations

The MassHealth application asks a question about whether someone has a disability. If you answered “yes” and Social Security hasn’t already decided if you are disabled, MassHealth will mail you a MassHealth Disability Supplement. You need to complete and send it back to the Disability Evaluation Services (DES) for a determination. For help completing the form or for other languages, call the DES Help Line at (888) 497-9890.

You can also download the form from the MassHealth website. For copies of the Supplement including the medical release forms, in English or Spanish, go to: Mass.gov/lists/masshealth-member-forms

Qualifying for MassHealth on the basis of disability may enable you to qualify for more health care benefits than if not disabled. Having the MassHealth DES disability determination may also allow you to claim your health care expenses and actual shelter costs that can boost your SNAP benefit.

If you are already getting MassHealth and did not answer “Yes” to the disability question at the time you applied, you can report a change at any time by calling MassHealth. If you have an online MassHealth account, you can update your application to indicate you have a disability. Start this process by completing and submitting the disability supplement paperwork as soon as possible. It is possible that DTA may issue you back benefits based on disability.

For more information on the difference between MassHealth Standard and MassCare Plus, see MLRI’s chart describing the programs here: Masslegalservices.org/content/careplus-table-comparing-benefits-standard.

Immigrants and Disability Determinations

Legally present (LPR, parolees, battered) immigrants who are subject to the 5-year waiting period can be eligible without the waiting period if they get EAEDC and are severely disabled. DTA uses the information in the "EAEDC Medical Provider Statement" form to verify disability to skip the 5-year bar.  See Question 50.


DTA Online Guide: 

See Appendix G for links to the DTA's BEACON 5 Online Guide for this section.