Food Support: Myth & Facts
Myth:
Most people only receive $14 a month.
Fact:
Statistics in Minnesota for Federal Fiscal Year 2006 show: The average benefit per case, per month is $190, and the average benefit per case, per month for those 60 and older is $48.
Myth:
Once the time limit for MFIP is up, Food Support is no longer available.
Fact:
There is no time limit for Food Support. Once MFIP runs out, the county can help the client to continue receiving Food Support.
Myth:
Having a checking account and/or savings account does not make you eligible.
Fact:
The resource or asset limit for all households is $7,000.
Myth:
Using Food Stamps is embarrassing; everyone can see when you hand over the paper money.
Fact:
Food Stamps are no longer issued as coupons; instead an Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) system is used. The EBT card looks and works like any other bank debit cards, making it hard for people to tell what you are using to pay for your food.
Myth:
If an individual is working, they cannot receive Food Support.
Fact:
Food Support is a form of assistance that benefits the working poor. As long as income and asset limits are met, people who are working are eligible.
Myth:
People who have been laid off, or are out of work because of an illness, cannot apply for Food Support.
Fact:
Anyone who needs Food Support and who meets the income and asset limits can apply.
Myth:
Everyone must go to the Food Support office for an interview.
Fact:
If a person is not able to go to the food support office, he or she may request a telephone interview. The person may also ask a relative, pastor, neighbor, etc., to attend the interview as an authorized representative.
Myth:
People cannot own a home or be in the process of buying a home to be eligible for Food Support.
Fact:
Individuals may own or buy a home and still receive Food Support. The home and its lot are not considered a resource, and the program does not require anyone to sign away their home.

Seniors (Defined as age 60 or older for the Food Support Program)

Myth:
Seniors do not receive credit for medical and prescription drug bills.
Fact:
Un-reimbursed out-of-pocket medical expenses that exceed $35 a month may be deducted unless an insurance company or someone who is not a household member pays for them. Only the amount over $35 can be deducted.
Myth:
Senior households must be re-certified for food support benefits every three months.
Fact:
If all adult household members are senior or disabled, the current certification period is 24 months.

Imigrants

Myth:
If a person is waiting citizenship, they cannot be on any Food Support or their citizenship application is denied.
Fact:
Some immigrants are eligible for Food Support regardless of citizenship. Receiving Food Support is not considered as being a public charge under immigration laws.
Myth:
Children born in the U.S. of illegal immigrants are not eligible.
Fact:
Children born in the U.S. are legal citizens and may apply for Food Support, despite the fact their parents may be of illegal status.
Myth:
The county office will report illegal immigrant status to INS.
Fact:

The county office by law, cannot report any illegal immigrant status to INS.

Myth:
Immigrants are not eligible for Food Support.
Fact:
Depending on your immigrant status, you may be eligible for Food Support. There is also a State Funded Food Program for immigrants who do not qualify for federally funded Food Support who are 50 years of age or older.