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Applying for SNAP in Tennessee

If you need assistance with this site because you have a disability or don’t speak English, free assistance is available. Contact the Family Assistance Service Center by phone at 866-311-4287 and/or the TTY number at 711. After the recorded message, you will reach an operator who can provide you with an interpreter.

What is SNAP?

The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) is a U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) initiative administered by Tennessee Department of Human Services (TDHS) that provides nutritional assistance to qualifying households. SNAP benefits are issued and accessed electronically using a Electronic Benefit Card or EBT Card for more information click here.

SNAP recipients receive benefits for a determined amount of time called a certification period. Our hope is that by the end of your certification period, you will reach a point where you are self-sufficient, thriving and able to care for your household without outside support.  SNAP is just one of many tools offered by TDHS that can help you reach these goals.  To learn more about other TDHS programs, Click Here.


How to Apply for SNAP

You can apply for SNAP by completing and submitting a SNAP application online when you Click Here OR you may submit a printed application by uploading or mailing a printed application.

To receive a printed application you may Contact your local office to have an application mailed to you or use the links below to download a SNAP application in the language of your choosing.

SNAP application links:

English Application (HS-0169) - English Addendum -  English Instructions - English Instructions Addendum
Solicitud en Español (HS-0169) - Apéndice en Español Instrucciones en Español - Apéndice de Instrucciones en Español 
العربية التعليمات ملحق - العربي الملحق -  ية العرب الطلب ستمارة
Arji Soomaali -  Tilmaamaha Soomaali - Tilmaamaha Wax lagu daray Soomaali

After you have completed your application, you have three options for submitting the printed SNAP application (choose one):

  • Upload your application or documentation on-line, Click Here
  • Mail your application or copies of your documentation to: Family Assistance Division Department of Human              Services P.O. Box 620001 Memphis TN 38181.
  • Submit your application at your county’s DHS office. Click Here to locate your local office.

Please note: TDHS offices may have COVID-19 safety measures in place. We recommend all customers entering State buildings take COVID-19 precautions according to their health situation. Be prepared to answer questions related to possible COVID-19 exposure, and follow social distancing guidelines for visitors and staff.


What to Expect When Applying for SNAP

Completing the SNAP application is just the first step to join SNAP and begin your journey to self-sufficiency. Additional documentation and forms are required to receive and maintain SNAP benefits. Often documentation to verify your identification and eligibility is needed to receive SNAP approval. This may include evidence of the following:

  • Social Security Number (Example: Social Security Card)
  • Your Identification (Example: driver's license, school ID with photo, passport, resident alien card, I-94 card, voter's          registration card)
  • Where you live (Example: lease agreement, utility bill, phone bill, or driver’s license with your address on it)  
  • Income and Resources (Example: check stubs, employer statement, award letters)
  • Shelter costs (Example: mortgage payments, property tax, homeowner’s insurance, rent receipt, lease agreement)
  • Cost of Utilities (Example: electric bill, water bill, gas bill)

Step-By-Step to Receive and Maintain SNAP

The steps needed to apply for and maintain SNAP are based on your SNAP classification. Classification is established by your family household and income situation. A family’s classification will determine if additional documentation or forms are needed to maintain SNAP benefits following initial approval. Use the list of SNAP classifications and related information below to determine what steps should be taken to apply for and maintain befits based on your family’s classification.


SNAP Classifications:

Most SNAP benefit recipients are part of this classification group that includes households with children and/or able-bodied working adult members under age 60. Typically, self-employed adults are not included in this group. Although the certification period for this classification is 12 months, these households are required to submit a Simplified Reporting Form at the sixth month of certification in order to continue receiving benefits. Failure to submit the Simplified Reporting Form on schedule (at the sixth month) will likely result in a pre-mature termination of SNAP benefits.

Most Simplified Reporting families with 12-month certification can expect to move through these steps when applying to receive SNAP benefits:


1. Complete the SNAP Application

Applications can be completed online using the Family Assistance Online Application OR applicants may submit a printed application by uploading or mailing the application. See section “How to Apply for SNAP” or Click Here for details.

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2. Complete the Eligibility Interview

After receiving your completed application, a SNAP case worker will contact you within 10 days regarding an interview. Interviews can be completed during first contact with your case worker or scheduled for a future date according to federal guidelines. Some cases may receive a “expedited” status based on customer need and guideline standards. If your case is determined “expedited,” you will be contacted within four days. Click Here for more information on eligibility.

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3. Submit Verification Documentation

You may be asked to submit documents that verify your social security number, identification, current residence, income, shelter, utility costs, other resources and/or possible deductions. Verification documentation can be submitted by file upload, scheduled appointment, or by mail. See section “How to Apply for SNAP” or Click Here for details. You can check the status of your application by logging into the Case Connect App or contacting your local DHS office. Click Here for contact information for your local office.

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4. Application is Processed (Approved or Denied)

Once your application, interview and verification are completed, your application will be reviewed, and you will be notified of approval or denial of benefits within 30 days. If your case is determined “expedited,” you may receive approval and benefits within seven days. You can check the status of your application when you Click Here or when you log into your One DHS Account. If you feel your denial was unmerited, you can Click Here to file an appeal.

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5. Complete the Simplified Reporting Form

“Simplified Reporting” households with 12-Month Certification are required submit a Simplified Reporting Form and verification at an interim point. Usually, this is due at the half mark between your approval and renewal date. You should receive your form and related instructions four weeks prior to the deadline and may submit required documents via file upload, mail or scheduled appointment at your local office. Failure to submit the form by the designated deadline may result in termination of your SNAP benefits.

If you misplace your form, you can contact the Family Assistance Service Center by phone at 866-311-4287 and/or the TTY number at 711 to receive another form.

In addition to completing the Simplified Reporting Form, SNAP recipients included in the Simplified Reporting Classification with 12-Month Certification are required to report certain changes to their resources or household situation using a Change Form.  If your household experiences any of the following changes while receiving  SNAP, you should report the change within 10 days of the occurrence.

  • An income increase that places your income over the gross income limit for the household size (at last certification).
  • If a household member is an able bodied working adult whose work hours are reduced to an average below 20
    hours per week (or 80 hours per month).
  • If any member of the household receives $3,750 in lottery or gambling winnings.

Click Here to download a Change Form to report these changes. Change Forms can be submitted via file upload, mail or scheduled appointment at your local office. If you have questions about these or other eligibility parameters and work requirements for SNAP, Click Here, to learn more.

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6. Application Recertification (Optional Renewal)

Most SNAP customers have a 12 or 24-month certification period depending on classification. Renewal requires completing a recertification application and may involve an interview and reverification. You will be notified of your recertification date and the associated submission requirements two months prior to the expiration of your current SNAP benefits. If you choose not to complete the renewal process, your SNAP case will be closed and you will no longer receive benefits.

If you are part of the Simplified Reporting 12-Month Certification Classification, you are encouraged to Click Here to download the Simplified Reporting Checklist for 12-Month Certification. This easy-to-use checklist can help you keep track of your submission deadlines and what to expect when you participate in SNAP. 

This certification group includes SNAP benefit households with all members over the age of 60 and individuals who have disabilities. These program participants have a 24-month certification period and are required to submit a Mid-Certification Form that is due at the 12th month of their certification period following approval.

Most elderly persons or individuals with disabilities included in the Simplified Reporting 24-Month classification can expect to move through these steps when applying to receive SNAP benefits:

1. Complete the SNAP Application

Applications can be completed online using the Family Assistance Online Application OR applicants may submit a printed application by uploading or mailing the application. See section “How to Apply for SNAP” or Click Here for details.

_______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

2. Complete the Eligibility Interview

After receiving your completed application, a SNAP case worker will contact you regarding within 10 days. Interviews can be completed during first contact with your case worker or scheduled for a future date according to federal guidelines. Some cases may receive a “expedited” status based on customer need and guideline standards. If your case is determined “expedited,” you will be contacted within four days.

To learn more about SNAP eligibility guidelines, Click Here for more information . You can check the status of your application by logging into the Case Connect App or contacting your local DHS office. Click Here for contact information for your local office.

_______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

3. Submit Verification Documentation

You may be asked to submit documents that verify your social security number, identification, current residence, income, shelter, utility costs, other resources and/or possible deductions. Verification documentation can be submitted by file upload, scheduled appointment, or by mail application. See section “How to Apply for SNAP” or Click Here for details.

_______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

4. Application is Processed (Approved or Denied)

Once your application, interview and verification are completed, your application will be reviewed, and you will be notified of approval or denial of benefits within 30 days. If your case is determined “expedited,” you may receive approval and benefits within seven days. You can check the status of your application when you Click Here or when you log into your DHS Account. If you feel your denial was unmerited, you can Click Here to file an appeal.

_______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

5. Complete the Mid-Certification Form

Elderly recipients and individuals with disabilities who receive SNAP benefits are required submit a Mid-Certification Form that is due at the half-way point between approval and renewal (the 12th month after approval). You should receive your Mid-Certification Form and related instructions four weeks prior to the deadline and may submit required documents via file upload, mail or scheduled appointment at your local office.

If you misplace your form, you can contact the Family Assistance Service Center by phone at 866-311-4287 and/or the TTY number at 711 to receive a form if you have misplaced your form.

In addition to completing the Mid-Certification Form, SNAP recipients included in the Simplified Reporting Classification with 24-Month Certification are required to report certain changes to their resources or household situation using a Change Form.  If your household experiences any of the following changes while receiving  SNAP, you should report the change within 10 days of the occurrence.

  • An income increase that places your income over the gross income limit for the household size (at last certification).
  • If a household member is an able bodied working adult whose work hours are reduced to an average below 20
    hours per week (or 80 hours per month).
  • If any member of the household receives $3,750 in lottery or gambling winnings.

Click Here to download a Change Form to report these changes. Change Forms can be submitted via file upload, mail or scheduled appointment at your local office. If you have questions about these or other eligibility parameters and work requirements for SNAP, Click Here, to learn more.

Failure to submit the form by the designated deadline may result in termination of your SNAP benefits.

_______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

6. Application Recertification (Optional Renewal)

SNAP participants with a 24-month certification period may apply to renew their benefits after 24 months. Renewal requires completing a recertification application and may involve an interview and reverification. You will be notified of your recertification date and the associated submission requirements two months prior to the expiration of your current SNAP benefits. If you choose not to complete the renewal process, your SNAP case will be closed and you will no longer receive benefits.

If you are part of the Simplified Reporting 24-Month Certification group, you can Click Here to download the Simplified Reporting Checklist for 24-Month Certification. This easy-to-use checklist can you help keep track of the associated dates for submitting SNAP verification and other required documentation needed to receive SNAP.

You may be a part of this subclassification group if your family includes able-bodied working adults who are certified to receive benefits for a period of four to six months. Generally, self-employed adults are not part of this subclassification.

SNAP recipients who have a certification period under six months can typically expect to move through these steps when applying to receive SNAP benefits:

1. Complete the SNAP Application

Applications can be completed online using the Family Assistance Online Application OR applicants may submit a printed application by uploading or mailing the application. See section “How to Apply for SNAP” or Click Here for details.

_______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

2. Complete the Eligibility Interview

After receiving your completed application, a SNAP case worker will contact you regarding within 10 days. Interviews can be completed during first contact with your case worker or scheduled for a future date according to federal guidelines. Some cases may receive a “expedited” status based on customer need and guideline standards. If your case is determined “expedited,” you will be contacted within four days.

To learn more about SNAP eligibility guidelines, Click Here for more information. You can check the status of your application by logging into the Case Connect App or contacting your local DHS office. Click Here for contact information for your local office.

_______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

3. Submit Verification Documentation

You may be asked to submit documents that verify your social security number, identification, current residence, income, shelter, utility costs, other resources and/or possible deductions. Verification documentation can be submitted by file upload, scheduled appointment, or by mail. See section “How to Apply for SNAP” or Click Here for details.

_______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

4. Application is Processed (Approved or Denied)

Once your application, interview and verification are completed, your application will be reviewed, and you will be notified of approval or denial of benefits within 30 days. If your case is determined “expedited,” you may receive approval and benefits within seven days. You can check the status of your application when you Click Here or when you log into your One DHS Account. If you feel your denial was unmerited, you can Click Here to file an appeal.

_______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

5. Application Recertification (Optional Renewal)

SNAP participants may apply to renew their benefits. Renewal requires completing a recertification application and may involve an interview and reverification. You will be notified of your recertification date and the associated submission requirements two months prior to the expiration of your current SNAP benefits. If you choose not to complete the renewal process, your SNAP case will be closed, and you will no longer receive benefits.

If you are certified to receive SNAP for less than 6 months, you can Click Here to download the SNAP Checklist for Certification Under Six Months. This easy-to-use checklist can you help keep track of the associated dates for submitting SNAP verification and other required documentation needed to receive SNAP. Informational resources are also available online when you Click Here to visit the TDHS Resource Library.

The 10-Day Reporting Classification is reserved for households that need SNAP a for short time period (under four months) or have a self-employed adult household member. 10-Day Reporting households are required to report household and resource changes within 10 days of an adjustment using a Change Form. Click Here to download the form. Participants in this classification can expect to receive SNAP in accordance with eligibility standards and move through these steps when applying to receive SNAP benefits:

1. Complete the SNAP Application

Applications can be completed online using the Family Assistance Online Application OR applicants may submit a printed application by uploading or mailing the application. See section “How to Apply for SNAP” or Click Here for details.

_______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

2. Complete the Eligibility Interview

After receiving your completed application, a SNAP case worker will contact you regarding within 10 days. Interviews can be completed during first contact with your case worker or scheduled for a future date according to federal guidelines. Some cases may receive a “expedited” status based on customer need and guideline standards. If your case is determined “expedited,” you will be contacted within four days.

To learn more about SNAP eligibility guidelines, Click Here for more information. You can check the status of your application by logging into the Case Connect App or contacting your local DHS office. Click Here for contact information for your local office.

_______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

3. Submit Verification Documentation

You may be asked to submit documents that verify your social security number, identification, current residence, income, shelter, utility costs, other resources and/or possible deductions. Verification documentation can be submitted by file upload, scheduled appointment, or by mail. See section “How to Apply for SNAP” or Click Here for details.

_______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

4. Application is Processed (Approved or Denied)

Once your application, interview and verification are completed, your application will be reviewed, and you will be notified of approval or denial of benefits within 30 days. If your case is determined “expedited,” you may receive approval and benefits within seven days. You can check the status of your application when you Click Here or when you log into your One DHS Account. If you feel your denial was unmerited, you can Click Here to file an appeal.

_______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

5. Report Changes Within 10 Days of Any Income Adjustment

After approval, SNAP recipients in the 10-Day Reporting classification may experience fluctuations in their income, residency, household composition, child-support or other resources. If you’re included in the 10-Day Reporting classification, changes to resources or household should be reported within 10 days of occurrence using a Change Form. If your household experiences any of the following changes while receiving  SNAP, you should report the change within 10 days of the occurrence:

  • A change that causes your household’s gross unearned income to increase or decrease more than $125 each month. This change could include changes in an income source or amount, but does not include income from the Families First program. Examples (alimony, child support, disability benefits, Social Security/SSI, Worker’s Compensation, unemployment benefits, pensions, stipends, and interest income).
  • A change in the source or amount of your household’s earned income such as a job change, hourly rate/salary change or other change that modifies the source of income.
  • A change that causes your household’s resources or amount of assets to exceed the eligibility limits.
  • A purchase or acquisition of a licensed vehicle that is not excluded as an asset (Example: an acquired vehicle
    with an equity value above $1500 that is not used for family transportation, work/income, or to carry heating or fuel).
  • Changes to the household composition (Examples: a birth, death, divorce or adults leaving the home).
  • Changes in residence such as a move. 
  • Changes in legally obligated child support payments or receipts.
  • If a household member is an able bodied working adult and their work hours are reduced to an average below 20 hours per week (or 80 hours per month).
  • If any member of the household receives $3,750 in lottery or gambling winnings

Click Here to learn more about SNAP eligibility as described above, or contact the Family Assistance Service Center at 1-866-311-4287 for more information. To report a change, Click Here download a Change Form. Forms can be submitted via file upload, mail or scheduled appointment at your local office

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6. Application Recertification (Optional Renewal)

SNAP participants with 10-Day reporting are certified SNAP for a period under four months or as long as 12 months and may choose to renew benefits by completing a renewal application.  Renewal may involve an interview and reverification. You will be notified of your renewal date and the associated submission requirements two months prior to the expiration of your current SNAP benefits. If you choose not to complete the renewal process, your SNAP case will be closed and benefits discontinued.

If you are certified to receive SNAP with 10-Day Reporting, you can Click Here to download the SNAP Checklist for Certification with 10-Day Reporting. This easy-to-use checklist can you help keep track of the associated dates for submitting SNAP verification and other required documentation needed to.


COVID-19 Safety Measures

PLEASE NOTE: Due to COVID-19 precautions regarding social distancing, DHS office lobbies are available only to customers by appointment.  State buildings, including TDHS offices in your area, may have COVID-19 safety precautions in place. We recommend all customers entering State buildings take COVID-19 precautions according to their health situation and utilize online self-service tools to access TDHS services.


Have Questions About SNAP?

If you have questions, answers about SNAP are just a click or a call away.

Visit Our Family Assistance Question Page
Find many of the answers you’re looking for when you Click Here.

Use Case Connect
You can find information about your case by logging into our CaseConnect or TDHS Account portal.

Chat With Us
Ava, the Tennessee Department of Human Services Virtual Assistant can direct you to the answers for many of your questions and provide points of contact to speak to TDHS workers regarding your case. Look for the “Chat with Ava” image on the lower right side of this page to chat and find the answers you need.

Call the Family Service Center
Phone: 866-311-4287

Find Us on Social @TNHumanServices
Many updates are shared via our social media pages and messaging. Find us on FacebookLinkedIn, or Twitter to discover updates on TDHS programs, or visit our Youtube for informative videos about TDHS programing.

Contact Your Local Office 
TDHS has offices to serve all 95 counties in Tennessee and can be reached via phone or visited by scheduled appointment.  However, many of these offices have COVID-19 safety measures in place and are closed to “through traffic.” Click Here to learn more about COVID-19 precautions of Click Here for a list of TDHS office locations.

Need Assistance Beyond SNAP?
You many qualify for other support programs administered by TDHS.  Click Here for a list of TDHS programs or Click Here to Find a Family Focused Solutions Provider near you here.


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