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The "Voluntary Quit" or "Reduction of Work Effort" Disqualification

When you determine a household member "voluntarily quit" a job or "reduced his or her work hours" without good cause, send the SNAP unit an email to receive approval, and disqualify the person for 90 calendar days on initial applications and 3 months for ongoing eligibility.  This disqualification will follow the disqualified household member to any new household the member joins.  When there are other people in the household, attempt to certify or maintain the eligibility of the rest of the household.

Policy describes several scenarios on how this rule should operate.  

Time you take action Number of Participants in the household Action Taken Date the Disqualification starts Disqualification Period
At an initial certification: Single person household You will deny the application. The applicant's disqualification begins the application date.  90 days
Multiple person household You will certify the household without the disqualified person. The applicant's disqualification begins the date the household's benefits are certified or denied.
Ongoing certification: Single person household You will close the SNAP benefit within ten days of learning that a "voluntary quit" or "reduction of work effort" without "good cause" occurred. The disqualification begins the date the SNAP benefit closes. 3 months
Multiple person household You will remove the household member within ten days of learning that a "voluntary quit" or "reduction of work effort" without "good cause" occurred.  The disqualification begins the date the disqualified person is removed from the household.
The household reapplies in the last month of an ongoing certification: Single person household Deny the application. The applicant's disqualification begins the first day after the existing certification ends. 3 months
Multiple person household Certify the household without the disqualified person. The applicant's disqualification begins the first day after the existing certification ends.
The household reapplies in the last month of the disqualification period: Single person household Deny the application for the first month and certify the case the day after the disqualification period ends. Not applicable 3 months
Multiple person household For the initial month of the application, attempt to certify the household without the disqualified person and add the disqualified person the month after the disqualification ends. Not applicable
The household timely appeals the disqualification and elects to receive SNAP benefits at their non-disqualified rate during the hearing process: Single person household Restore the client to pre-disqualification benefit level pending the hearing decision. When the hearing upholds the disqualification, close the SNAP benefit effective the next month.  Advanced notice is not required.  The disqualification begins the day after the SNAP benefit closes. 3 months
Multiple person household Restore the household to pre-disqualification benefit level pending the hearing decision. When the hearing upholds the disqualification, close the SNAP benefit effective the next month.  Advanced notice is not required.  The disqualification begins the date the disqualified person is removed.

Example 1:

A household submits a certification renewal on 08/15/2017 for SNAP benefits scheduled to close 09/01/2017.  The household consists of two adults.  John, aged 31, is currently disqualified for a "voluntary quit."  You disqualified and removed John from eligibility on 07/01/2017.  How will you handle John's disqualification in light of the certification renewal? 

Using unfinished issuance, you will certify the household for September with John being coded as S/O with reason 9D and add John to the household effective 10/01/2017.

Example 2:

Mona, aged 45, works for the city maintenance crew.  A fellow co-worker advised her she can receive SNAP benefits while working at her job.  Mona applied for SNAP benefits on 12/03/2017.  Her income verification revealed she worked an average of 36 hours per week and earned $1393.20 in gross monthly income.  No one else resides in Mona's household.  The worker determined Mona's income exceeded the SNAP income standards and denied the application.  Confused by her friend's assurances, Mona called and asked for an explanation.  The worker explained that Mona simply made too much money at this time to qualify. 

 Mona reapplies for SNAP benefits on 01/05/2018.  Her income verification now shows she works an average of 23 hours per week and earns $890.10 in gross monthly income.  You ask why Mona's income has changed.  Mona reports she would like to receive SNAP benefits, so she decided to work less.  The employer also confirms Mona's hours were reduced per her request. 

 

What should you do?  Will Mona qualify for SNAP?  When?

 

You must deny the application on 01/05/2018.  Mona has provided verification she reduced her work effort in violation of the Work Registration requirements.  Since it is an initial application, email the SNAP unit, and disqualify her for 90 days.  She could end the disqualification by becoming exempt or increasing her work hours to more than 30 per week.  If this does not occur, then Mona is not eligible until 04/05/2018.

 

Note:  The disqualified person can shorten their disqualification by meeting a  Work Registration exemption.  It is the household's responsibility to request that the disqualified person be added to the food benefit at the end of the disqualification period. 
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