1115.090.00 VERY LOW FOOD STAMP INCOME

IM-#40 May 15, 2007

Special attention must be given to EUs claiming income so low that a change is likely to occur in order for the EU to continue functioning. If an EU claims low income in comparison to family size and/or expenses for an extended period, the situation is questionable. Thoroughly examine the EU's circumstances. However, an EU with stable income which is low and fixed expenditures does not necessarily constitute an inconsistency when the EU can be expected to maintain its level of existence for an extended period of time.

If it appears that the household is not declaring all income or is inflating expenses, take appropriate action to determine the facts and prevent overissuance. Contact collaterals whenever it appears that this action is likely to help clarify the situation. Explore and establish past management.

When an EU reports expenses near or exceeding income, consider the EU's expenses inconsistent with its reported income and resources. When an EU's income is less than their expenses, the message “Expenses exceed Income: Explore management and comment.” appears at the end of the controlled flow on the Action Authorization (FM3H) screen as a reminder to explore management. Discuss the situation in detail with the EU to determine the facts. Explore and establish the EU's past management. Enter a comment on the Eligibility Unit Member Role (FM3Z) screen regarding management. If an acceptable explanation of management is provided by the EU and there is no other outstanding verification, approve the application and authorize benefits.

Do not authorize benefits when an EU's application contains unclear, or inconsistent information until questionable items have been clarified and resolved unless eligible for expedited benefits (see Expedited Service). Do not enter a verification code for any unclear or inconsistent information. FAMIS will pend the application and create an FA-325 Request for Information requesting the verification of factors for which a verification code is not entered. Refer to the Editing and Adding Text to the FA-325 user guide for instructions on adding text to the FA-325 when additional information regarding management is also required.

If the EU fails to explain management and management is in question, reject the application using reason code “MGT”. Refer to the Worker Initiated Rejection user guide.