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SNAP ALERT: Fault Determinations and proration of SNAP benefits

Starting this month, when a SNAP application or recertification is approved after the initial 30 day period DTA no longer automatically puts SNAP on the EBT card going back to the date of application. Now, if a case is approved or reopened after the first 30 days,DTA is required to determine the cause of the delay in processing and attribute "fault" to either DTA or to the client. If it is client fault, SNAP will be "prorated" and issued from the date DTA got everything they needed to determine eligibility. If it is DTA's fault, SNAP will go back to the date of the application. See the attached overview from MLRI and DTA's Operations Memo 2014-30.

These new DTA rules make it especially important that clients who have applied for SNAP have an interview and get in all necessary verifications within 30 days. If there is a delay the client may not get SNAP going back to the date of the application.

What should advocates share with clients?

1. If possible, it is better for their SNAP if all requested mandatory verifications are submitted in the first 30 day period.

2. Remind clients of the timeline for the SNAP application/recertification process (especially the timeline for an interview and sending in proofs) and what to do if they miss an interview phone call or do not receive a notice scheduling an interview. For a reminder, check out the Advocacy Guide questions on interviews and verifications.;

3. If a client is having a hard time getting a verification (because of a disability, an employer that is not cooperating, etc) DTA has a duty to assist clients in obtaining verification, including by performing a collateral contact. See the attached form created by GBLS that can help raise issues your clients are having with DTA.;

Coalition members have raised that sometimes clients are asked;for unnecessary/excessive verifications. If you have questions about the verifications a client is asked to provide or if you have clients who are approved for SNAP but do not receive the full amount of SNAP going back to the date they applied, please contact Vicky Negus at 617 357 0700 x315.