The West Virginia Family Assistance office handles the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), which was formerly known as the food stamp program. SNAP is administered by the West Virginia Department of Health and Human Services and the USDA, Food and Nutrition Services. While the program started in 1961, it has taken on a different name and is no longer called “food stamps.” SNAP provides a monthly assistance program to low-income families who are struggling to pay bills and create a healthy meal for their household. Eligibility to receive benefits depends on the number of people in the household as well as income. There are other factors, such as citizenship and asset limits. To read more about the program, you can visit the Family Assistance website for SNAP located here.
It is recommended that individuals use the screening tool to see if they are eligible before applying. You can access the online screening tool by clicking here. The screening tool will go over some basic questions about your household and income. You will have to answer these questions as well when you apply, which you can also do online through the website inROADS. Once you sign up for an account on inROADS, you can start an application and check on the status once it is submitted. This is the quickest way to receive benefits. Many individuals receive benefits within 7 days if they meet emergency criteria. Other individuals will receive benefits within 30 days. You can always sign into your account through the inROADS website after applying. Once you apply, you will receive a followup call by a case worker for an interview, which is mandatory. You do need to bring certain items to identify yourself and prove your income to the interview. Your caseworker will inform you of these documents upon contacting you about your application.
Eligibility is largely determined by your income and household size. If your monthly gross income exceeds $2,000 and your household size is under four, you may not be eligible for food stamp benefits. West Virginia published an income manual to explain income requirements. You can access this manual by clicking here. In addition, your household’s members must be US citizens and have social security numbers. It is also important you do not have any assets worth over $2,000, as this is another red flag to case workers. If you are eligible, you will receive an approval notice. In this notice, you will be informed of your benefit amount and when you will receive a deposit. You will also receive an EBT card, which will allow you to use your benefits like a debit card at any grocery store or super market.
SNAP is the federal name for the food assistance programs. Every state has multiple SNAP locations. In fact, every county should have multiple locations where you can use your card. You can find specific locations near you using the SNAP retailer locator on the federal website. You may contact the Client Services Hotline for West Virginia by calling 1-800-642-8589. You can also visit any local DHHR office by looking at this directory for a location near you.
Below is a list of the maximum allowable income in order to qualify for food stamps in the State of West Virginia as it relates to the number of household members.
1 = $15,444
2 = $20,826
3 = $26,208
4 = $31,590
5 = $36,972
6 = $42,354
7 = $47,749
8 = $53,157
Aside from having to prove you monthly/yearly income by providing your social security number and other relevant documents, your personal bank accounts must also be below a certain amount in order to qualify. In West Virginia, your current bank accounts (checking and savings) must be below $2,001 or $3,001 if you share the household with a person of age 60 or older or a person with a disability.
The My Benefits Account (MBA) is the old system West Virginia used in order to distribute benefits. They have since switched to a new system called “inROADS”. If you had a My Benefits Account in the past, you will need to sign in to the new inROADS system.
InROADS is the website used by West Virginia residents in order to apply for benefits, review benefit balances and much more. People who wish to apply for food stamps must create an inROADS account. If you need help navigating the inROADS website, you can call their customer service center at 1-877-716-1212, 8am – 5pm, Monday through Friday.