Social Security beneficiaries will receive their new 2024 COLA increase from December 29 onward. Those on Food Stamps have a different schedule. If you are new to SNAP benefits, you should know that the new COLA boost started on October 1, 2023.
So, your Food Stamps will include the new COLA boost in December too. Therefore, there will not be another COLA increase until October 1, 2024. Well, actually, there could be a reduction instead of an increase.
This is what people on Food Stamps in Hawaii have recently experienced. If inflation goes up, so will SNAP benefits, but it could be the other way around. So, do not take boosts for granted.
NEW RULES FOR ABLE-BODIED ADULTS WITHOUT DEPENDENTS ON FOOD STAMPS
If you are an adult, can work, and have no children, you will have to be careful. Or else, you may end up losing your SNAP benefits if you do not meet the work requirements.
For your information, an Able-Bodied Adult Without Dependents (ABAWD) can only receive Food Stamps for three months in 3 years. This will only happen if they do not work for at least 20 hours per week.
So, make sure you work for at least 80 hours per month if you are an Able-Bodied Adult Without Dependents. This time limit prevents many Americans from getting SNAP if they do not work.
However, there are ways to continue collecting Food Stamps if you cannot find a job. Getting some training or education is one of them. Of course, the SNAP office must approve this training program.
WHEN WILL THE ABAWD TIME LIMIT INCREASE THE AGE?
The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) and the Food and Nutrition Service have announced that there will be a new change on October 1, 2024. So, those on SNAP benefits whose age is between 18-54 will have to meet the ABAWD time limit.
Then, if you are 53 or 54 years old in 2024, you will have to work for at least 80 hours per month to get SNAP for more than 3 months. Just like those aged 18-52 do now. Of course, you can get an exemption if you have a child.
Pregnant women do not have to work to get Food Stamps for more than 3 months in a three-year period. People who are experiencing homelessness can also continue getting them. Veterans can also avoid these work requirements. People with a disability do not have to meet the ABAWD time limit.
If you have been in foster care and are between the ages of 18-24, you can also qualify for an exemption. The SNAP amounts will range from $291 to $1,751 through September 30. Make sure you check the new income limits since you may qualify after the recent changes.