What is CalFresh?
CalFresh is the new name for Food Stamps in California, and is nationally recognized as Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP). CalFresh will allow you to access healthy and nutritious food improving the health and well-being of your household. Once you sign-up for Calfresh you will get benefits issued every month to a card that can be used just like a bank card. This Golden State Advantage EBT (Electronic Benefit Transfer) Card can be used to buy most foods at farmer’s markets, food stores and even some restaurants. Those who receive CalFresh will no longer have to go to issuance outlets. You can simply slide this card at the cash register. Use of the card is secure, convenient and offers users privacy when making purchases.
The amount of the available monthly benefit will be determined after you apply and will depend on the size of your household, your bills, and your income.
How do you apply for CalFresh
You may apply online for CalFresh using the C4Yourself website.
To visit the San Benito County office in person, go to the following:
Health and Human Services Agency
San Benito County Health and Human Services Agency business hours are 8am-5pm, excluding holidays. For an alphabetical list of the office’s in California, click here.
Not everyone will be approved to receive CalFresh benefits. There are various requirements that must be satisfied in order to qualify for CalFresh assistance. These include the recipients’ immigration status, household income limits, additional Reporting Requirements, Household Resource Limits, possible Work Requirements. If you begin your application here you will be given detailed information and tips that cover all these requirements. After completing the application an interview is required to certify your household. During your interview you can ask for further explanation of the program rules and you will be assisted in the parts of your application that have not yet been completed.
When applying, your immigration status will only be used to check for eligibility. The status of your immigration will NOT be used to deport you unless there is a criminal violation.
Qualified immigrants are eligible for CalFresh. Qualified immigrants includes any of the following: a refugee, a valid asylum, a permanent legal resident (green card), those granted with-holding of deportation, a Haitian entrant, a Cuban entrant, a parolee to the U.S. for more than one year by immigration, a victim of domestic violence, a victim of human trafficking, a holder of a temporary green card and applicants for interim relief.
CalFresh is available to immigrants who:
If you are in the U.S. temporarily you are not eligible (such as students) if you don’t meet the CalFresh requirements you can see if you qualify for California’s other food assistance program, the California Food Assistance Program.
Common immigration questions concerning CalFresh
Q: If I don’t have immigration documentation can my children get CalFresh?
A: Yes. Even if you are not eligible your kids may be able to receive CalFresh. If your kids were born in the United States, qualify for special status, or are permanent residents you may apply for CalFresh for them.
Q: If my children get CalFresh will it affect my ability to get a green card or become a citizen?
A: No. CalFresh does not make anyone a public charge. Outside of fraudulently receiving benefits, the use of CalFresh does not affect whether someone can become a citizen, get a green card or denied entry into the country.
Unless your household contains an elderly, disabled or all members receive assistance it will be subject to income limitations in order to determine eligibility to receive CalFresh. The income restriction is first based on gross income then the net income test is calculated.
Household Resource Limit Requirements
A household can only have a certain level of resources to be eligible for CalFresh. Something is considered a resource when it can be drawn upon (or sold) to provide financial assistance. The limit for resources for CalFresh is $2,000 for the household. Households that contain a member that is disabled or elderly (over 60) can have resources up to $3,000.
Commonly Asked Questions
Public Assistance Division
Fax: (831) 637-9754
TDD/TTY: (831) 634-4969
Mon-Fri 8AM – 5PM