The Pennsylvania Department of Public Welfare offers food stamp benefits to families based on financial need. Determination of eligibility for food stamp applicants includes available resources and the total household income, minus allowable deductions for basic expenses.
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Income and Assets
The Pennsylvania Department of Welfare considers all household income, both earned and unearned, in determining food stamp eligibility and the monthly benefit amount. Income sources may include earnings from employment, Social Security payments, retirement or pension, unemployment income, child support or alimony. Applicants must also report resources such as cash, money in bank accounts and vehicles.
The state determines the household's gross income by deducting certain expenses from total monthly income, including subtracting a standard deduction based on the number of people in the household. Other expenses may include childcare, child support, property taxes, property insurance, rent and utilities. Households with an elderly or disabled member can deduct medical bills exceeding $35.
Gross Income Limit
Upon figuring the total household income less allowable deductions, the gross income test is applied. As of September 2010, Pennsylvania's gross income limit for one person is $1,444 per month or $1,805 if a household member is elderly or disabled; each additional member of the household adds $499 to this maximum income limit, or $624 for households with an elderly or disabled member.