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Foodstamps SNAP Program


(Previously called the Food Stamp Program)

Click here to go to the Virginia Department of Social Services website for more information.

Click here to apply online at the Virginia Commonhelp website

As of October 1, 2009, the name of the Food Stamp Program changed to Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP). The name change does not affect benefits and does not require anyone receiving benefits prior to 10/01/09 to reapply.

If you are inquiring about the SNAP Program, we are required by law to inform you of the following information:

  1. You may obtain an application at our office or we will mail one to you on the same day you request it.
  2. You are encouraged to file an application the same day you contact the agency. You may return the application to the agency either by mail, fax, electronically or in person as soon as possible.
  3. The processing time and amount of benefits you will receive, if your household is eligible, will depend on the application date. Benefits for the first month are prorated.
  4. Separate rules exist for the SNAP Program and other programs so you should apply even if other programs have limitations on the receipt of benefits.

The SNAP Program is administered by the US Department of Agriculture and is operated on local level in Virginia. The program is designed to help prevent hunger and malnutrition by insuring a better diet for low income household. It is not designed to supply all food needs, only to supplement them.

With SNAP benefits, you can purchase any food or food products including seeds to grow a garden for yourself and members of the SNAP household. You cannot buy alcoholic beverages, tobacco, paper products or pet food. (SNAP benefits will not buy hot prepared foods, however, the Meals-on-Wheels Program and other authorized facilities are an exception.)

Certain basic requirements must be met in order to receive SNAP benefits. You must show proof that you are a legal resident of the city/county in which you are applying. You must be a US Citizen or be a legally admitted alien.

You can expect to provide the following verifications and/or proof of:

  • All incomes: Social Security, SSI, Veterans, child support, self-employed income, etc. and wages for the month prior to the application month.
  • Social Security numbers for all household members,
  • Child care expenses
  • Personal identification such as driver's license with photo id.

If a case is expedited (emergency) all verification except "ID" maybe postponed.

Expedited Criteria:

  1. Household with less than $150 in monthly income and liquid resources less than $100.
  2. Migrant or seasonal farm worker households who are destitute as defined in Part V.F. provided their resources do not exceed $100.
  3. Household whose combined monthly gross income and liquid resources are less than the household's incurred monthly rent or mortgage, and utilities, regardless of whether or not, or how the expenses are paid.

For more information, click here.


Am I eligible for Assistance? - This online service can help you find out if you are eligible to receive temporary cash assistance or SNAP benefits.

For more information: apply online at the Virginia Commonhelp website

Civil Rights Policy and Procedures (How to file a complaint)

The Virginia Department of Social Services and local Virginia social services offices prohibit discrimination in their programs and activities on the basis of race, color, national origin, age, disability, and where applicable, sex, marital status, familial status, parental status, religion, sexual orientation, genetic information, political beliefs, reprisal, or because all or part of an individual's income is derived from any public assistance program.

For more information:

Date Last Modified: 04/24/2014


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