Noncitizen Introduction - SNAP


A noncitizen is defined as an individual who has immigrated from another country to the United States for the purpose of residing in the U.S.  An eligible noncitizen is someone who was lawfully admitted for permanent residence or lawfully residing in an eligible noncitizen status.  The criteria for an eligible noncitizen differs between TAFDC, EAEDC and SNAP.  Be sure to confirm the noncitizen’s eligibility with the specific program’s regulations on noncitizens.

An individual who is a visitor, diplomat or student from another country has not been admitted for permanent residence and is a nonimmigrant.  This individual is ineligible for TAFDC, EAEDC or SNAP benefits.

An individual who is a non legally-residing noncitizen who presents a Final Order of Deportation is ineligible.

When a noncitizen applying for SNAP benefits indicates an inability or unwillingness to provide information or acceptable verification of an eligible noncitizen status that person will be ineligible.  In such cases you must not continue efforts to obtain documentation.  Likewise, if a noncitizen applying for SNAP benefits indicates an inability or unwillingness to provide, or apply for, a Social Security Number due to immigration status that person is ineligible.  You shall not continue efforts to obtain documentation. SNAP eligibility will be determined for the remaining members of the household who verify an eligible noncitizen status.



  • When conducting a face-to-face interview with a noncitizen applicant it is important to provide him or her with the Noncitizen Right to Know and the Noncitizen Resource Brochures.

  • A Supplemental A: Questions Regarding Citizenship Status (Supp A-1) must be completed for any household containing a noncitizen, especially when a person in the household indicates they are not applying for SNAP benefits.


SNAP Eligible Qualified Noncitizen Status

A noncitizen’s eligibility for SNAP benefits depends on the noncitizen being a qualified noncitizen and meeting certain conditions related to the qualified noncitizen status.

A qualified noncitizen means a noncitizen who at the time the noncitizen applies for or receives SNAP benefits is in one of the following categories as determined by the United States Citizen and Immigration Service (USCIS):


Verifying 40 Quarters

Noncitizens that have 40 quarters of work experience may be eligible for SNAP benefits.


Disabled Noncitizen

SNAP regulations provide that certain qualified noncitizens may be eligible for SNAP based on disability as long as the disability meets RSDI or SSI standards regardless of date of entry into the U.S.


State Data Exchange (SDX) Noncitizen Indicator Codes

The Noncitizen Indicator Codes on the State Data Exchange (SDX) Basic Screen in PACES, is a one-letter code which represents the individuals citizen/noncitizen status as determined by the Social Security Administration, if an application has been made, and is another source to assist you in the determination of an applicants eligibility.


Verification of Noncitizen Status

A noncitizen applying for SNAP benefits and claiming an eligible noncitizen status must verify that he or she is present in the United States (U.S.) under one of the noncitizen statuses. The noncitizen must submit verification in accordance with Department procedures of the eligible noncitizen status and the date the status was granted for each member of the household at application, at recertification or when the status of the noncitizen changes or is questionable.  In addition, the noncitizen must verify other noncitizen eligibility requirements as described under the applicable noncitizen status above.  Verification of an eligible noncitizen status must be presented before the determination of SNAP eligibility.


Verification of Immigration Status

At application the applicant must provide documentation of immigration status only for household members applying for benefits.  Once provided the information must be verified through the Systematic Alien Verification for Entitlements (SAVE).  This is done by accessing the SAVE system, selecting the Initial Verification Button in the SAVE system and completing the request form.  Once submitted the system will verify the information or, in certain circumstances, prompt the user to institute a secondary verification.  Sponsor deeming information may also be requested on the request additional verification window of SAVE.


Sponsor Deeming

Certain noncategorically eligible noncitizen households are subject to sponsor deeming.  Sponsor Deeming is the counting of the income and assets of the sponsor(s) based on the amount on the affidavit of support or current verification of the sponsor(s) circumstances whether or not monies are actually given to the sponsored noncitizen.


Ineligible Legal Noncitizen Status

An individual present in the U.S. under conditions or sections of the INA not described above, notwithstanding a legal noncitizen, is ineligible for SNAP benefits.  His or her income or assets shall be considered in their entirety for the remaining household members (See Nonimmigrants).


Entering Citizenship Data

Entering INS Designation

Entering Legal Permanent Resident Data

Entering Noncitizen Data

Entering Sponsor Deeming Data


Noncitizen Policy and Procedures


  Last Update: February 6, 2013