USDA Changes SNAP Rule

December 5, 2019

Under the new rule, able-bodied citizens between the ages of 18 and 49 without dependents will be encouraged to work as they participate in SNAP. A three-month limit within a 36-month time period applies for benefits, unless the recipient works or participates in a work-training program for at least 20 hours.

The agency can waive the time limit in areas of high unemployment. States can also enact exemptions. The rule does not apply to older recipients, those who are disabled or pregnant women.

“Americans are generous people who believe it is their responsibility to help their fellow citizens when they encounter a difficult stretch,” said U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue. “We need to encourage people by giving them a helping hand, but not allowing it to become an indefinitely-giving hand.”

The USDA rule is posted by the USDA at