Department of Human Services

Food Stamp Online  Policy Manual

Payments/Benefits Excluded In Eligibility Determination




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(a)   Definition of Excluded Reimbursements


Reimbursements for past or future expenses other than normal living costs are excluded to the extent they do not exceed actual expenses and do not represent a gain or benefit to the household.   When a reimbursement, including a flat allowance, covers multiple expenses, each expense does have to be separately identified as long as none of the reimbursements cover normal living expenses.   Reimbursements for normal living expenses of the household, such as rent or mortgage, personal clothing, or food eaten at home, are a gain or benefit and therefore are not excluded.   To be excluded, these payments must be provided specifically for an identified expense, other than normal living expenses, and used for the purpose intended.   Excluded reimbursements include the following payments:


1. Reimbursements received to pay for services provided by Title XX of the Social Security Act. 


2. Reimbursements for out-of-pocket expenses of volunteers incurred in the course of their work. 


3. Dependent care or medical reimbursements.   Direct payments made to a household to cover the costs associated with the upkeep of animals specially trained to provide service to the disabled are to be excluded as a medical reimbursement. 


4. Non-federal reimbursements or allowances to students for specific education expenses, such as travel or books, but not allowances for normal living expenses such as food, rent, or clothing.   Portions of a general grant, loan, or scholarship must be specifically earmarked by the grantor for education expenses, rather than living expenses, to be excluded as a reimbursement. 


5. Rent subsidy payments, known as STRAP (State of Tennessee Rental Assistance Payments) made as part of the settlement agreement in People First of Tennessee, et al. v.   Clover Bottom Developmental Center, et al.   These are need-based payments to developmentally disabled people who are making the transition from institutionalization to community-based living arrangements.   


(b)   Non-Excluded Reimbursements


When the household claims that a reimbursement exceeds the actual expense, consider the amount by which it exceeds the actual incurred expense as income. 


Glossary of Terms

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