State-Funded Food Assistance Programs

Last updated June 2024

This table lists the state-funded programs that provide nutrition assistance to immigrants who are not eligible for coverage under the federally funded Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), formerly known as the Food Stamp Program. Unless otherwise noted, state-funded assistance is provided at the federal SNAP benefit level.



California “Qualified” immigrants, lawful temporary residents, survivors of trafficking, U visa applicants, and U visa holders. Eligibility for this program may be affected by deeming.

By October 2027, individuals 55 years and older, regardless of their immigration status.

Illinois Individuals and derivative family members who have filed an application for T or U status or asylum; terminates if application for status is finally denied. Does not include single adults without derivative family members unless application for assistance was filed before June 5, 2024. Does not include individuals who are preparing to file an application for T or U status or asylum unless application for assistance was submitted before June 5, 2024.
Maine Immigrants ineligible for federal food stamps (SNAP) due to the 1996 federal welfare law and PRUCOLs. Individuals applying after July 1, 2011, must meet hardship criteria. This includes exceptions for seniors, people with disabilities, survivors of domestic violence, people waiting for work authorization, and those granted work authorization who are seeking employment.
Minnesota Lawfully residing immigrants who are either 50 years or older or are receiving TANF. (The TANF program combines cash and food assistance.) Must take steps toward citizenship. Eligibility for this program may be affected by deeming.
Washington Qualified” immigrants, PRUCOLs, and lawfully present immigrants. Eligibility for this program may be affected by deeming.
Survivors of trafficking or other serious crimes and asylum applicants who have filed or are preparing to file applications for T or U status, ORR certification, or asylum are also eligible.


Key Terms Used in Table

“Qualified” immigrants – – are: (1) lawful permanent residents (LPRs); (2) refugees, asylees, persons granted withholding of deportation/removal, conditional entry (in effect prior to Apr. 1, 1980), or paroled into the U.S. for at least one year; (3) Cuban/Haitian entrants (as defined in 45 C.F.R. § 401.2); (4) battered spouses and children with a pending or approved (a) self-petition for an immigrant visa, or (b) immigrant visa filed for a spouse or child by a U.S. citizen or LPR, or (c) application for cancellation of removal/suspension of deportation, whose need for benefits has a substantial con¬nection to the battery or cruelty. Parent/child of such battered child/spouse are also “qualified”; (5) victims of trafficking and their derivative beneficiaries who have obtained a T visa or whose application for a T visa sets forth a prima facie case. (A broader group of trafficking victims who are certified by or receive an eligibility letter from the Office of Refugee Resettlement are eligible for benefits funded or administered by federal agencies, without regard to their immigration status.); and (6) Citizens of Micronesia, Marshall Islands, and Palau who reside in the U.S. pursuant to a Compact of Free Association (COFA).

“PRUCOL” or permanently residing in the U.S. under color of law – is not an immigration status, but a benefit eligibility category. The term, which generally means that the Department of Homeland Security is aware of a person’s presence but has no plans to deport/remove the person from the country, has been interpreted differently de¬pending on the benefit program and jurisdiction.

Deeming – in some cases, a sponsor’s income and/or resources may be added to the immigrant’s in determining eligibility.  Exemptions from deeming may apply.

NOTE:  The information in this table is subject to change. Please check with your state or local social services agency or legal assistance office regarding the most current rules.