5 Government Benefit Programs for Low-Income Households
Brief List of Government Programs for Low-Income Households
Several government programs provide help to low-income families and individuals. These programs allow the disadvantaged to meet their basic needs. Programs, such as SNAP and Medicaid, ensure individuals and households receive proper food, healthcare, additional funding, and other necessities to improve their situation. The government generally funds the program, while the states administer the features. From food to medical care, here is our list of the 5 top government benefit programs for low-income households.
Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)
Formerly known as Food Stamps, SNAP is among the leading federal nutrition assistance programs in the U.S. The program operates in all 50 states and provides benefits for low-income individuals. Individuals receive a monthly stipend, which the state transfers on an EBT card. The EBT card acts like a debit card and allows people to purchase food at grocery stores, farmer’s markets, discount stores, and anywhere that accepts EBT (electronic benefit transfer).
According to the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, single households (one person) receive an estimated average benefit of $175 per month for 2022. The larger the family, the larger the monthly stipend.
To qualify for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, you must meet three eligibility tests:
- Gross Monthly Income. Your earnings must be at or below 135% of the poverty line before taxes, deductions, and additional funds, like social security, unemployment, or a pension.
- Net Income. After applying all the deductions from your gross earnings, your net income should be at or below the poverty line.
- Assets. A low-asset household does not exceed $2,000 ($3,000 if an elderly or disabled person is a member.
Medicaid benefits low-income households by providing health coverage. It is one of the most popular sources of health coverage in the U.S. The program began in 1965 and expanded in many states under the Affordable Care Act, which, in turn, provided more coverage and help for low-income families. Pregnant women, children, the disabled, and the elderly rely most on medical care. However, Medicaid is available to eligible enrollees who don’t have access to affordable health insurance.
Eligibility requirements vary by state but come down to two broad factors: financial and non-financial eligibility.
- Financial eligibility: You will qualify financially if your income is at or below the Federal Poverty Level (FPL).
- Nonfinancial eligibility: You must be a resident of the state in which you are applying, a U.S. citizen (or qualified non-citizen), and medically needy.
Supplemental Security Income (SSI)
SSI is a program that provides financial aid to individuals with disabilities and low income/resources. Individuals aged 65 and older can also receive Supplemental Security Income if they meet the financial requirements. The state provides monthly payments, but the amount varies depending on specific situations. For example, you may receive less money if you generate other income, such as wages, Social Security, or a pension. Alternatively, you may receive more if the state supplements the Federal SSI benefits where you live.
SSI should not be confused with SSDI – Social Security Disability Income. SSDI refers to an individual’s disability and the work credits they earn over their work history, not a disability and limited income.
Federal Lifeline Assistance Program
The Lifeline Program provides low-income individuals and households discounts on telecommunication services. It is a federally funded government program that provides eligible low-income households access to FREE monthly wireless services. This benefits low-income individuals by keeping them connected to the world: their loved ones, work, school, 911 Emergency service calls, and much more.
If you enroll in a government program, or your income is at or below 135% of your state’s federal poverty guidelines, you may qualify. Learn more about the Lifeline Program.
Through this program, Q Link Wireless provides FREE Data, Talk, & Text to millions of Americans. If you think you qualify, sign up today.
Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP)
The ACP is the latest government benefits program providing discounts on monthly broadband services and connected internet devices to eligible low-income households and individuals. The National Verifier determines eligibility, as it does with the Lifeline Program. To participate in the Affordable Connectivity Program, you must meet one of two requirements: enrollment in a government assistance program, such as SNAP, Medicaid, or Lifeline; or if your income is at or below 200% of the federal poverty guidelines in your state.
Through this program, we can provide FREE UNLIMITED Data, Talk, & Text to millions of eligible Americans. If you want to participate in the program, sign up today with Q Link Wireless. We’re one of the fastest-growing providers of the Lifeline and ACP programs, offering affordable prepaid cellphone service.
Signing up takes 5 minutes.