Prepare for the Interview
Once you’ve filled out your application for SNAP benefits, you can call your local SNAP office to set up an appointment for an eligibility interview. If you drop your application off at your local office, you may be able to be interviewed that day. If you mail or fax your application or apply online, your local office will contact you to schedule an in-person or telephone interview. If your interview is not scheduled within a day or two of your request, you may want to mail, fax or drop off at least the first page of the application form. The first page usually includes your name, address, and signature. Once the first page or entire application form is received by the local office, the process starts. This means, if you are eligible, you will get food sooner.
In preparation for your eligibility interview, gather the paperwork you need to give the SNAP worker. Depending on your situation, you may need to bring in check stubs, a letter showing amount of unemployment benefits or social security or supplemental security income, rent or mortgage payments, property taxes, insurance on home, child or elder care payments, or child support. Before going to the interview, ask what papers you should bring with you.
Examples (not all are required) of items you might need for your interview:
- Driver's license OR
- Work, school, health benefits, or voter registration OR
- Birth certificate
- Voter registration or library card with your address OR
- Utility bills OR
- Rent or mortgage receipts that show your address OR
- Mail received at the stated address
- Paystubs/statement your employer OR
- Employee W-2 form OR
- Income tax forms OR
- Self-employment bookkeeping records
- Bank statements OR
- Benefit award letter or benefit payment check OR
- Child support agreement OR
- Income tax forms OR
- Rental agreement or lease OR
- Unemployment compensation award letter
Immigration Status: Immigration and Naturalization papers are not required if you are applying for SNAP benefits only for your children who were born in the United States.
What can I expect to happen at an interview?
The worker will review your application form with you. You will have the opportunity to ask questions. You can also change any answers or fill out questions that were left blank. The worker will ask you to verify information such as your name, address, household income, and expenses. If you have your paperwork with you, this can speed up the process. Your worker may ask to scan or make copies of certain papers for the file. The paperwork is used to support the way your budget is determined. If the worker needs more information, you may be asked to provide it. The worker may also be able can help you obtain the needed information if you are unable to get it. If you are not clear as to what information the worker needs, ask him/her to give you something in writing so you will know what you need to return with and when it is due back to the worker.