Food stamps, also known as Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or SNAP, benefits, are monthly payments to low-income people meant to help them buy food. These benefits are given in the form of a debit card to which money is credited every month. Benefits can only be used to purchase food. In order to qualify for SNAP benefits in Kentucky, as in other states, an individual must pass a means test of his current income and assets.
In Kentucky, income limits for food stamps recipients are set according to federal guidelines on poverty. A person must make less than the federal standard for poverty, which is changed annually depending on inflation and other factors. In addition, the household must have less than $2000 in cash or assets in a bank account; if the household contains an elderly person aged 60 or older, the household can have a maximum of $3000 in assets.
When calculating income, an individual must count a number of different sources beyond wages earned from a job. This includes government benefits, includng Social Security retirement and disability payments, as well as other forms of public assistance. However, the household may also be able to deduct a number of expenses, such as rent, utilities, child support payments and, for some elderly and disabled people, certain medical expenses, when calculating income.
In order to receive food stamps, a person must provide the Kentucky state government with proof of her income. This proof can be provided with a number of different documents, including pay stubs, letters from the government agency that administers benefits, and records of child support payments. Similarly, deductions must also be adequately documented to be claimed. For example, a person wishing to deduct the cost of utilities payments should present a recent bill from his utilities company.
A person who is eligible for food stamps under the Kentucky state income standards must also fulfill a number of other requirements to receive them. First, she must apply for stamps in person at a state office. Then, if he is a male between the ages of 18 and 59, after he has begun to receive food stamps he must fulfill any job training requirements that the state asks him to complete, although he may apply for an exemption.