The Online Resource for Massachusetts Poverty Law Advocates

99. What is Simplified Reporting and when must I report changes to DTA?

ALERT:  Many of the rules in the SNAPAdvocacy Guide do NOT apply during the pandemic. Please go to the following COVID-19 & DTA benefits page: https://www.masslegalservices.org/DTA-COVID-19 until further notice for more information about changes.

The majority of SNAP households are on “Simplified Reporting. This means you do not have to report to DTA any changes most of the time. You do have to complete a DTA Interim Report (after 6 months) or a Recertification (after 12 months). There are also times when you DO need to tell DTA about a change in between your reporting periods. The rules vary for different types of households.

Households without members age 60+ or disabled:

You only need to tell DTA when your household’s gross income goes over the monthly gross income limit for your household size. 106 C.M.R. § 366.110(C)(3). This includes if someone moves into your household with income that puts your household’s income goes over the limit.

Be sure to tell DTA by the 10th day of the month following the month your income went over the gross income limit. The gross income limit for your household should be listed on your approval notice. See Gross Income Chart in Appendix B.

Example: Selina is a single mom with one child on simplified reporting. Her SNAP was approved in January, so her Interim Report is due in June. Selina starts a second part time job in March earning $200/week. Her total monthly gross income from both jobs is below 200% FPL for her household. She does not need to report the second job until her Interim Report. However, in April Selina works more shifts and her gross income goes above 200% FPL. She needs to tell DTA by May 10th about this increase in income.

Households with members age 60+ and/or disabled

You only need to report changes when you fill out your Interim Report and Recertification form. You do not need to tell DTA about any changes in between these forms.

Reporting rules are different for some households where all members are seniors or persons with disabilities. See Question 101 about “EDSAP.”

ABAWD households

If you are an ABAWD and you are meeting the ABAWD work rules by working 20 hours per week, you need to follow the reporting rules above as well as tell DTA if your hours drop below 20 hours per week.

Example: Carla is an ABAWD and works 20 hours per week at a restaurant. Two months after she starts getting SNAP, her boss takes away one of her shifts and her hours go down to 13 per week. She must tell DTA within 10 days of the decrease in her hours.

When to report other changes to DTA

You are not required to report other changes, but you may want to report some changes if it will help boost your SNAP. For example, you may choose to report to DTA when:

  • Your income goes down,
  • Your housing costs go up,
  • Someone without income moves into your home or you have a baby,
  • Your dependent care or medical costs go up, or
  • You start paying child support.

DTA is required to act on the information you report and increase your SNAP benefits if you are eligible for more. 106 C.M.R. § 366.110(C)(5)(a)(2).

Example: Suzyn and her 3 kids are on Simplified Reporting. Her employer reduces her hours. If Suzyn choses to report and verify the drop in earnings, DTA will recalculate and increase her SNAP benefits. Unless her income goes over the Gross Income level for her household, she is not required to report anything else until her Interim Report.

If the change you report results in your SNAP increasing to the maximum benefit amount, DTA should issue you a supplement for the month of the reported change. See Question 106.

If you send DTA pay stubs or other information that shows your income has gone up or your housing costs or other costs have gone down – even though you are not required to send it -- DTA may treat that information as verified and reduced your SNAP. See Question 103. See also 106 C.M.R. § 366.110(C)(5)(a)(1). If you move, see Question 19.

DTA Online Guide Sections: SNAP > Certification Types > Simplified Reporting


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