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Work Study

When the household applies for SNAP, the student must

  1. qualify for work study for the school term and

  2. anticipate working during the current school term.

Exemption Timeframe

The exemption begins either the month when the term begins or the student starts performing the work study assignment. It ends the last day of month in which the school term ends or the day you learn the student refused an assignment.

The work study exemption does not apply to school-scheduled breaks unless

  • the break is shorter than one month or

  • the student continues to perform his or her work study assignment during the break.

Example 1:

Joy, aged 18, applies for SNAP on August 30. She is attending a local junior college more than half-time. The school approved her for work study, but she has not yet gotten a work study job. She plans to look for a position this semester. This is her first year at college. Do you grant Joy the work study exemption?

Yes, since the school approved her for work study and she is pursuing a position, grant her the work study exemption.

Example 2:

Keith, aged 19, began attending as a full-time college student at a four-year university in the fall term. The school approved Keith for work study, but Keith did not find a position. Keith explains he still intends to pursue work study, but he was not able to get a position last semester. The spring term began in January 15. Keith applied for SNAP in February. Does Keith qualify for the work study exemption?

The fact that Keith did not get a work study position during the first school term undermines his intent to pursue work study. Keith must qualify for another higher education student exemption or begin performing work study before he can qualify for SNAP.

Example 3:

Harmony, aged 21, attends college full-time, has a work study job and receives SNAP benefits. The school terms ends on May 15. Harmony submits her mid-certification renewal on June 1. The next school term begins August 18. She verifies she is continuing to perform her work study job. Does Harmony still qualify for the work study exemption?

Yes, she does. The work study exemption does not continue over breaks unless the student participates in work study during the break or the break is shorter than a full month.

Example 4:

Winter, aged 23, receives SNAP and is a full-time student at the local university. She has a work study exemption. Her fall term ends on December 15 and the spring term begins on January 8. It is not possible for her to continue performing her work study job because the school closes during the break. Her mid-certification renewal is submitted on December 18. Does she need a new exemption to meet the higher education student rules?

No, the exemption continues across breaks less than one full month. As long as Winter intends to continue her work study job during the spring, she can continue to use the work study exemption.

Example 5:

Carsen, aged 30, receives SNAP benefits and attends higher education more than half-time. He performs work study while attending school. He submits his certification renewal on July 1. He is not attending the summer semester and is not performing work study. The spring term ended on May 10. He reports no other exemptions to the higher education student rule than work study. Does he still qualify for SNAP?

No, he does not. Students enrolled in an institution of higher education at least half-time must meet an exemption. Carsen is not able to use the work study exemption because his break is longer than one month and he is not continuing to perform his work study job during the break. Since he is not meeting another exemption, you must deny him for failing to meet the higher education student rules.

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