It is essential that SNAP state agencies accurately determine who is eligible for benefits and how much they are eligible for. One of the ways this is measured is through payment error rates, which assess the accuracy of state eligibility and benefit determinations for households that received SNAP benefits. Another way is through case and procedural error rates, or CAPER, which assess cases when a household is denied SNAP benefits or has their benefits terminated or suspended.
A case and procedural error occurs when a state takes one or more inaccurate or procedurally incorrect actions when denying, terminating, or suspending a household’s SNAP benefits. CAPER reflects both the accuracy of the state agency’s determination and their compliance with federal procedural requirements around the determination. For example, states are required to notify households if their SNAP benefits may be denied, terminated, or suspended. They are required to do so via a clear notice that includes specific required language and is sent within a certain timeframe. If the state does not provide the notice, or the notice does not meet the other requirements, a case and procedural error has occurred, which will be reflected in the state’s overall CAPER.
FNS works closely with state agencies to minimize case and procedural errors through technical assistance, training for caseworkers, improving data systems, and implementing new policies and procedures.
Case and Procedural Error Rates by Fiscal Year
Fiscal Year 2022 CAPER Data
- The decision was inaccurate;
- The notice provided to the household was inaccurate, unclear, insufficient;
- The notice provided to the household was not timely; and/or
- The procedures followed related to these decisions were inaccurate or not timely.
Accuracy of Action
Accuracy of Household Notice
Accuracy of Procedures
Timeliness of Action and Notice
1Individual state data is available for accuracy of the action; accuracy of the household notice; accuracy of procedures, when those procedures were required and completed; accuracy of procedures, when those procedures were required but not completed; and timeliness of the action and notice.