CalFresh Eligibility

CalFresh Eligibility Step by Step

To qualify for CalFresh as a student, you must:

1. Be a US citizen or Legal Permanent Resident

If this does not apply to you, you can check out other food resources (linked below). 

2. Meet all of the following criteria:

  • Be Between 18-49 years old
  • Mentally and physically fit enough to be able to work
  • Be enrolled at least half-time (6 units or more)

If you do not meet these criteria,  you may still be eligible! You will need to meet the income limits and other requirements but will not be asked to verify your student status (in other words, you can skip step 3).

3. If you meet the student definition, you must also satisfy at least ONE of these qualifications:

Please note that while you may qualify for more than one of the programs/categories below, you only need to tell your worker about one qualification. 

*Temporary COVID Expanded Eligibility*

Student Programs

NEW-Local Programs that Increase

Employability (LPIE)

  • Expected Family Contribution (EFC) = $0

  • Eligible for work-study

  • Been awarded work-study this academic year

  • Work 20 hours/week or an average of 80 hours/month 

  • Have a dependent under the age of 12

  • Receiving Cal Grant A or B

  • Chafee Educational Training Voucher Program

  • Berkeley Hope Scholars 

  • Extended Foster Care (AB12/AB 212)

  • UC McNair Program

*Note: as of 09/01/2022 EOP and DSP are no longer approved programs; however, most students may qualify under a different exemption*

4. Meet the income bracket, effective October 1, 2022:

Household size

Maximum Monthly Gross Income

1

$2,266

2

$3,052

3

$3,840

4

$4,626

5

$5,412

6

$6,200

Each additional household member

+$788

*The income bracket is updated annually based on government guidelines.*

5. Meal Plans Status

Your household must not be on a meal plan with more than 11 meals per week. Please note that some on-campus meal plans and some co-op meal plans may make you ineligible for CalFresh.