Child support affects your food stamps, whether you are the one paying or receiving. When you apply for food stamps, you have the option to apply individually or with your children. Nearly one-fifth of SNAP households with children receive child support.
Non-court-ordered child support
If you receive non-court-ordered child support, you still need to report this income to SNAP. Child support payments are for covering the basic needs of your child, including feeding and clothing them.
Court-ordered child support
The government allows parents who aren’t receiving their court-ordered child support to deduct it from their income. It’s only when the other parent is upholding their obligation that you need to report the income. The government may investigate to confirm whether you answered honestly, so it’s best to not lie.
Deductions for the one who pays
SNAP allows the one who’s paying court-ordered child support to deduct those payments from their income. However, if you’re paying non-mandated child support, then this isn’t deducted from your income. In this situation, you might want to obtain a court order.
No child support
If you aren’t receiving child support, then Maryland might decline your application in favor of opening court-ordered child support. The state prefers for parents to first obtain the money they need for life’s necessities from the other parent. States have the right to decline food stamps if the applicant refuses to cooperate in proving the paternity of the child as well.
It’s possible to be eligible for food stamps if you receive child support, but you would still need to have a need for assistance. In most situations, the parent who receives child support has enough money to cover their living expenses. They can’t deduct the payments because it’s part of their income, and it helps cover the costs of raising their child.