WAG 03-15-02: Persons Exempt from the Work Provisions

PM 03-15-02.

  • At initial application, REDE and when adding new household members during the certification period for new household members, the FCRC will determine if an individual meets an exemption reason in PM 03-15-02. A person who qualifies for exemption in PM 03-15-02 is exempt from the Work Provisions and the Work Requirements (PM 03-25-01). The HSC must answer the appropriate questions in order for IES to apply the correct exemption for the individual. 
  • For the requirement to accept a job that is suitable employment, see PM 03-15-05 for a definition of suitable employment.
  • A student enrolled at least half-time in an institution of higher education must meet student eligibility requirements to qualify for SNAP.  For students meeting the student eligibility requirements and claiming an exemption complete the applicable questions on the "Education - Details" screen and the "Living Arrangement/Domicile-Details".
  • For individuals claiming an exemption for participating in an alcohol or drug treatment program, answer the applicable questions on the "Individual Demographics - Conviction/Rehabilitation" screen.

Caring for a Child Under Age 6

  • A parent or other adult household member who is responsible for the care of a dependent child under age 6 is exempt from Work Provisions. When there is more than one adult in the home, the adult that provides the majority of the care qualifies for the exemption.
  • The child does not have to live in the home. If the child's 6th birthday occurs during the certification period, register the individual responsible for the care of the child at the next scheduled recertification, unless the individual qualifies for another exemption.
  • To exempt a person who is a caretaker of a child under age 6, answer the applicable questions on the "Relationship -Details" screen, including the question, "Needs work exemption to provide care for?" Click Add.

Note: The exemption living in a SNAP household with a child under age 18, even if the child is ineligible for benefits is a Work Requirement exemption only. 

Caring for an Incapacitated Person

  • A person who is responsible for the care of an incapacitated person is exempt from the Work Provisions and the Work Requirement (PM 03-25-01).
  • To exempt a person who is a caretaker of an incapacitate person, answer the applicable questions on the "Relationship -Details" screen, including the question, "Needs work exemption to provide care for?" Click Add.

Medical Exemptions

The Client Assessment Unit does not determine a medical exemption for SNAP customers.

Temporary Illness

The HSC exempts a person who has a temporary illness if there is medical evidence provided by the customer or other evidence that the illness or injury is serious enough to temporarily exempt the customer. When an illness or medical condition is obvious through observation, the HSC can make the determination to exempt the individual without requiring verifications. Evidence for temporarily exempting a customer includes, but is not limited to:

  • observing a cast on a broken leg; or
  • receipt of Workers' Compensation; or
  • knowledge of a scheduled surgery or recuperation from surgery.

If a temporary exemption is allowed due to a medical condition, the HSC must set a task as a reminder to follow-up with customer prior to date that the exemption is expected to end. The task should be set in advance to allow time for the HSC to request verifications from the customer and the customer time to return any verifications that are needed for an extension.

Note: Minor ailments and injuries such as colds or rashes are not normally serious enough to exempt a person.

Chronic Illness

The FCRC exempts a person who is mentally or physically unable to work due to a chronic illness if a medical provider or service provider finds that a physical or mental impairment, either by itself or in conjunction with age or other factors, prevents the customer from working, participating in SNAP E&T, or other countable activities. The receipt of disability benefits can also verify the exemption, regardless of the percentage of disability or level of payment, such as SSI, SSA, Railroad Retirement, AABD, or VA, or receipt of a government or a private temporary or permanent disability benefit.

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Verify the Exemption

  • If an individual's disability is not obvious to the HSC or the individual is not receiving a disability benefit, the HSC should request that the customer provide proof from a medical professional or service provider.
  • Verification can be obtained via written statement or by using SNAP Work Requirement Request Medical/Service Provider Unfit to Work Determination (Form 2340). This is an optional form. Verification may be accepted from a physician, physician's assistant, nurse, nurse practitioner, designated representative of the physician's office, a licensed or certified psychologist, a social worker; a counselor or staff person at a drug and alcohol program, or a social worker or staff person at a homeless or domestic violence services provider or shelter; or any other medical personnel determined appropriate.
  • Document the proof used to support the exemption in Case Comments.
  • Establish an exemption review date based on the information obtained and the customer's condition. When a person with a temporary illness exemption becomes physically and/or mentally fit, change their work exemption status to nonexempt, unless another exemption reason applies.
  • Complete the Household Individuals - Questions screen for persons who are claiming an exemption due to a disability.