CalFresh Income Limits

The maximum income to qualify for CalFresh (also known as food stamps) depends on household size.

The income limit for CalFresh California, also known as food stamps, is based on your household size and the amount of money you make each month. To qualify, your gross and net income must be below the amounts listed in the chart below. Net income refers to your income after any allowable deductions are subtracted from your total gross income. Deductions include things like housing expenses, child care, and medical expenses. The program helps eligible households buy the food they need to survive. Those who are approved receive monthly benefits that are deposited onto an Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT) card, which looks similar to a debit card. The cards can be used at most grocery stores, and farmers markets to purchase food.

The program can also be used to purchase seeds and plants to grow your own food. It can be accessed by people of all ages and backgrounds, including students, immigrants, and families with children. It’s a powerful tool to help reduce hunger, support health and expand opportunity. For more information, visit the CalFresh website or call to speak with an Eligibility Specialist. The number is 1-800-410-9344. The program is administered by the state of California and is part of the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Programme. The federal government oversees the programme, but it’s run independently by individual states.

Income Limits for CalFresh California
CalFresh Income Limits 1

Income Limits for CalFresh California

Maximum Gross Income Level

Number of People in Household130% Federal Poverty Level Maximum Gross Income AllowedGross Monthly Income Eligibility Standards for Modified Categorical Eligibility (MCE)/Broad-Based Categorical Eligibility (BBCE) 200% Federal Poverty Level Maximum Gross Income Allowed
Each Additional Member+$512+$788

Adjusted Net Income

Number of People in HouseholdMaximum Net Income Allowed
Each Additional Member+$394
How Much Can You Make and Still Get CalFresh
CalFresh Income Limits 2

How Much Can You Make and Still Get CalFresh?

The gross income limit for most households is 200% of the federal poverty level. However, some households have different requirements based on their type or circumstances. These groups include students, elderly/disabled individuals, and immigrants. The rules for these households are governed by the United States Department of Agriculture, Food and Nutrition Service and adapted by California through the County Welfare Departments (CDSS). If you are interested in learning more about CalFresh eligibility requirements, please use this pre-screening tool or contact your local Food Bank.

Depending on the household size, the income test is conducted using a formula that considers several factors, including the cost of living, deductions, and other expenses. The calculation also looks at how much a household of that size “should be” paying for food. The actual amount of food stamps the household receives is then determined by comparing this figure to the maximum benefit levels for that household size.

The food assistance benefits are deposited on the applicant’s EBT card each month based on their scheduled deposit day. The Food Bank and hundreds of its partner agencies offer SNAP outreach services at various community events. They distribute fresh fruits, vegetables, canned goods, breads, and other foods to people in need throughout LA County after their CalFresh benefits depleted.

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