Can You Get Food Stamps While in Nursing Home

Depending on your income and resources, you may be eligible for Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits, commonly known as food stamps, while residing in a nursing home. The amount of SNAP benefits you receive is determined by your income and expenses, including the cost of your nursing home care. To apply for SNAP benefits, you’ll need to meet certain eligibility criteria and provide documentation to support your application. Contact your local SNAP office or visit the USDA website for more information about eligibility requirements and the application process.

Eligibility Criteria for Nursing Home Residents

To qualify for food stamps as a nursing home resident, you must meet the following criteria:

  • Be a U.S. citizen or eligible non-citizen.
  • Have a valid Social Security number.
  • Be a resident of the nursing home for at least 30 consecutive days.
  • Meet the income and asset limits set by the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP).
  • Not be disqualified for certain reasons, such as being a fugitive, a student, or a member of a household disqualified for trafficking drugs.

Application Process for Nursing Home Residents

  1. Check Eligibility: Determine if you meet the eligibility criteria for food stamps.
  2. Obtain Application: Contact your local SNAP office, a nursing home caseworker, or visit the USDA website to obtain a SNAP application.
  3. Gather Required Documents: Compile the necessary documents, such as proof of identity, Social Security number, income, assets, and residency in the nursing home.
  4. Complete Application: Fill out the SNAP application accurately and completely. If you need assistance, seek help from family, friends, the nursing home staff, or a SNAP outreach worker.
  5. Submit Application: Submit the completed SNAP application and required documents to your local SNAP office or mail them as instructed.
  6. Await Processing: The SNAP office will review your application and determine your eligibility within a timeframe specified by your state.
  7. Notification of Decision: You will receive a written notice regarding the approval or denial of your SNAP benefits.
Income and Asset Limits for SNAP
Household Size Gross Monthly Income Limit Net Monthly Income Limit Asset Limit
1 $1,583 $1,252 $2,500
2 $2,152 $1,713 $3,750
3 $2,721 $2,174 $5,000
4 $3,290 $2,636 $6,250
5 $3,858 $3,097 $7,500
6 $4,427 $3,559 $8,750
7 $4,996 $4,020 $10,000
8 $5,565 $4,481 $11,250

Additional Resources:

Continuation of Benefits During Nursing Home Stay

Individuals receiving Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), commonly known as food stamps, may continue to receive benefits while residing in a nursing home. However, certain conditions must be met, and benefits may be adjusted based on the individual’s circumstances.

Eligibility Criteria

  • Residency: The individual must reside in a nursing home that is licensed or certified by the state.
  • Income and Assets: SNAP eligibility is based on income and asset limits. The individual’s income and assets must meet the program’s requirements to receive benefits.

Benefit Adjustments

  • Reduction in Benefit Amount: SNAP benefits may be reduced if the individual’s income or assets exceed certain limits.
  • Offset for Nursing Home Costs: The nursing home may deduct a portion of the SNAP benefit to cover the individual’s food and nutrition costs while residing in the facility.
  • Continuation of Benefits for Short-Term Stays: If the individual is expected to return home within six months, SNAP benefits may continue uninterrupted.

Applying for SNAP While in a Nursing Home

Individuals who are not currently receiving SNAP benefits and wish to apply while residing in a nursing home can do so. The application process may vary depending on the state, but generally involves the following steps:

  • Contact the local SNAP office or visit the state’s Department of Human Services website to obtain an application.
  • Complete the application and provide necessary documentation, such as proof of income, assets, and residency in the nursing home.
  • Submit the completed application to the SNAP office or designated drop-off location.

Additional Information

For more information about SNAP benefits and eligibility requirements, individuals can contact their local SNAP office or visit the USDA Food and Nutrition Service website.

Income and Asset Limits for SNAP Eligibility
Household Size Gross Income Limit Asset Limit
1 $1,340 $2,250
2 $1,809 $3,750
3 $2,278 $5,250
4 $2,746 $6,750
5 $3,215 $8,250
6 $3,683 $9,750
7 $4,152 $11,250
8 $4,620 $12,750

Nursing Home Residents and Food Stamps

Individuals residing in nursing homes may be eligible to receive financial assistance for their food expenses through various programs, including the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP).

Reimbursement to Nursing Homes for Food Costs

  • Federal Funding:
    • The federal government provides funding to nursing homes through Medicaid and Medicare programs to assist with food costs for eligible residents.
    • The reimbursement rates are determined by the state in which the nursing home is located.
  • SNAP Benefits:
    • Nursing homes may receive SNAP benefits on behalf of eligible residents who meet income and other requirements.
    • The SNAP benefits can be used to purchase food for meals served to residents in the nursing home.
  • Other Sources:
    • Charitable organizations, foundations, and local community programs may also provide financial assistance to nursing homes to cover food costs.
    • Nursing homes may also generate revenue through the sale of meals to non-residents.

It is important to note that SNAP benefits cannot be used directly by nursing home residents to purchase food outside of the nursing home setting.


Residents of nursing homes may be eligible for various programs and sources of funding to cover their food costs. The availability of financial assistance depends on factors such as the resident’s income, eligibility for government programs, and the policies of the nursing home.

Well, folks, that’s all the time we have for today’s discussion on whether you can get food stamps while in a nursing home. I know it can be a lot to take in, so if you have any questions or concerns, don’t hesitate to reach out to your local Social Security office or check out the USDA’s website. Thanks for sticking with me until the end! If you enjoyed this article, be sure to check back soon for more informative and engaging pieces. Until next time, take care and keep those taste buds satisfied!