Online at MNbenefits.mn.gov
On paper using the Combined Application Form (PDF) for families and individuals under age 60; individuals and couples who are 60 or older should use the one-page Senior SNAP Application (PDF). Mail or bring the completed form to your local county office.
The Combined Application Form is also available in:
After your application is reviewed, you will need to be interviewed and provide information such as your income, assets and housing costs.
Yes, if you authorize someone to act on your behalf. It can be a friend, relative, person with power of attorney, or person appointed by the courts. You need to provide information about this person on your application. This person will then be approved as your authorized representative. They can then contact your worker, attend interviews for you, complete forms, provide document, file appeals and receive your food benefits to help keep track of it.
If you cannot go to your county office for an interview, you can either:
Request to be interviewed over the phone
Have your authorized representative attend the interview for you.
It depends on your situation.
In most cases, your worker must notify you of a decision within 30 days.
For some emergency situations, you could get benefits within 24 hours, or five working days from the day you file your application.
It depends on your situation. Some people must complete a Combined Six-Month Report form and an annual recertification form to keep getting SNAP benefits. Some people must complete a monthly Household Report form. Your worker can tell you what you will need to do. Be sure you complete and return any paperwork that you get from your county office.
SNAP is a supplemental program. Your household is expected to spend about 30 percent of your income on food. The amount of benefits you can get depends on the number of people in your household and their income.
Minnesotans who are approved for the program receive a plastic debit card called an Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) card. Each month, your benefits will be credited to your EBT account. During the month, you swipe your EBT card and the purchase(s) are deducted from your account balance. The card can be used in grocery stores, markets, and some local farmers' markets to buy food, or plants and seeds to grow food to eat.
Benefits cannot be used to buy non-food items, such as paper products, household and personal hygiene supplies, alcoholic beverages, tobacco products, vitamins, medication, pet foods, foods eaten in the store or hot ready-to-eat "deli" food.
You may authorize another person to use your EBT card. Read the General info questions below for more details about where you can shop.
The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or SNAP, is a nutrition assistance program that helps people with low incomes buy nutritious foods. SNAP is not meant to meet all of your food budget needs. It is a supplement. For more details, you can read and print the SNAP brochure (PDF).
You can use SNAP benefits only to buy food and plants and seeds to grow food for your household to eat. You cannot use it to buy:
For more information, visit the What Can SNAP Buy? page on the U.S. Department of Agriculture's website.
You will receive an Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) card that you use like a debit card to spend your SNAP benefits. You can use your card at store that display a poster or sign that read: "We Accept EBT."
Grocery stores and convenience stores must sell a variety of foods to be approved to accept EBT cards. They will display the sign if they can accept EBT. The card may also be used at authorized sites for Meals on Wheels and congregate dining. Many farmers markets also accept EBT.
SNAP recipients can also use their EBT cards to make Scan & Go food purchases at Sam’s Club locations throughout Minnesota. Scan & Go checkout is a new mobile payment service Sam’s Club members can use in-store via their Sam’s Club app. Members simply use their Sam’s Club app to scan items as they shop, pay via the app and then exit the store -- all while skipping the checkout line.
For more information on using your EBT card, see How to use your Minnesota EBT Card (PDF).
The EBT card looks and works like any other bank debit card, making it hard for people to tell what you are using to pay for your food.
If you are eligible for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) benefits, you are most likely eligible for these benefits as well. You can use your WIC benefits to buy approved staples, such as eggs, milk and cheese, and your SNAP benefits to fill in the gaps.
SNAP is intended to help supplement the food and nutrition needs of people with low incomes. These benefits are for eligible families and individuals of all ages, including children and seniors. Minnesota has an estimated 88,000 seniors who struggle with hunger each year, but fewer than half are enrolled in the program. Currently, more than 500,000 Minnesotans-children, adults, families, seniors-participate in this nutrition assistance program.
SNAP rules require applicants to verify their identity to receive program benefits. Though a valid state‐issued ID is a common document used to prove identity, you can also use:
A birth certificate
An ID card for health benefits or another assistance program
A school or work ID card
Paycheck stubs containing applicant's name
Household income is the main test for determining who can get SNAP. Things such as the home you live in, retirement and savings accounts and vehicles are not counted.
You may own or buy a home and still receive SNAP. The home you live in and its lot are not counted as assets.
No. SNAP does not recover any benefits paid out using a lien against your home.
Yes, if you meet income limits and all other program rules.
Yes, if you meet all program rules. Anyone who needs help paying for food can apply.
There is no time limit for SNAP. When Minnesota Family Investment Program (MFIP) runs out, your county can help you continue to get SNAP. Your worker may contact you for more information. If you do not want to keep getting SNAP, tell your worker.
MFIP benefits provide cash and food benefits to eligible families. Most families on MFIP receive a food portion as part of their MFIP benefits.
You can contact any of the following agencies directly to file a civil rights complaint:
The Minnesota Department of Human Services, Equal Opportunity and Access Division, prohibits discrimination in its programs because of race, color, national origin, creed, religion, sexual orientation, public assistance status, age, disability, sex (including sex stereotypes and gender identity) or political beliefs. Contact the Equal Opportunity and Access Division directly only if you have a discrimination complaint:
Minnesota Department of Human Services
Equal Opportunity and Access Division
P.O. Box 64997
St. Paul, MN 55164-0997
651-431-3040 (voice) or use your preferred relay service
The Minnesota Department of Human Rights prohibits discrimination in public services because of race, color, creed, religion, national origin, disability, sex, sexual orientation, or public assistance status. Contact the Minnesota Department of Human rights directly:
Minnesota Department of Human Rights
Freeman Building, 625 North Robert Street
St. Paul, MN 55155
800-657-3704 (toll free)
711 or 800-627-3529 (MN Relay)
In accordance with Federal civil rights law and U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) civil rights regulations and policies, the USDA, it's Agencies, offices, and employees, and institutions participating in or administering USDA programs are prohibited from discriminating based on race, color, national origin, sex, religious creed, disability, age, political beliefs, or reprisal or retaliation for prior civil rights activity in any program or activity conducted or funded by USDA.
Persons with disabilities who require alternative means of communication for program information (e.g. Braille, large print, audiotape, American Sign Language, etc.), should contact the Agency (State or local) where they applied for benefits. Individuals who are deaf, hard of hearing or have speech disabilities may contact USDA through the Federal Relay Service at (800) 877-8339. Additionally, program information may be made available in languages other than English.
To file a program complaint of discrimination, complete the USDA Program Discrimination Complaint Form, (AD-3027) found online at: http://www.ascr.usda.gov/complaint_filing_cust.html, and at any USDA office, or write a letter addressed to USDA and provide in the letter all of the information requested in the form. To request a copy of the complaint form, call (866) 632-9992. Submit your completed form to USDA by:
(1) mail: U.S. Department of Agriculture
Office of the Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights
1400 Independence Avenue, SW
Washington, D.C. 20250-9410;
(2) fax: (202) 690-7442; or
(3) email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
This institution is an equal opportunity provider.