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Description and Requirments

Program Description

The Disaster Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (D-SNAP) gives food assistance to low-income households with food loss or damage caused by a natural disaster.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) authorizes states to operate D-SNAP in a disaster area. Your state must request FNS approval. You area must also be under a presidential disaster declaration for individual assistance.

If you get D-SNAP benefits, you can access them through an Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT) card. You can use it like a debit card to buy food at most local grocery stores.

General Program Requirements

Because of the unique needs of disaster survivors, D-SNAP uses different standards than the normal Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP). If you would not normally qualify for SNAP, you may qualify for D-SNAP for disaster-related expenses.

D-SNAP applications are usually accepted for a period of seven days. If you qualify, you are issued funds to help meet your food needs for 30-days. Program requirements vary by state.

Based on certain factors, you must have at least one of these disaster-related effects or unreimbursed expenses to qualify:

  • Home or business repairs;
  • Temporary shelter expenses;
  • Evacuation or relocation expenses;
  • Home or business protection;
  • Disaster-related personal injury, including funeral expenses;
  • Lost or no access to income, including reduced, terminated, or delayed receipt of income for half of the benefit period;
  • In some cases, food loss after a disaster event like flooding or power outages.

If you’re a current SNAP client, you can also get disaster food assistance when your state operates a D-SNAP.

If your disaster losses and SNAP benefits are less than the monthly maximum, you can request a supplement. The supplement brings your benefits up to the maximum for the household size. This keeps benefits equal between D-SNAP and SNAP households that qualify.

If you’re a current SNAP client, you may also request replacement benefits from your local office for food that was bought with SNAP benefits and lost in the disaster.

D-SNAP in Louisiana

Frequently asked Questions  about D-SNAP from DCFS:

  • If you are currently receiving SNAP benefits, you do not need to register, you should receive D-SNAP automatically.
  • If you already receive SNAP benefits and live in a parish or ZIP code where DSNAP is activated, you may automatically have supplemental SNAP benefits added to your EBT cards. You DO NOT need to pre-register or apply for DSNAP. Please do not visit a DSNAP location!

  • Pre-registration will make the process go more smoothly.

How can I pre-register for DSNAP?

Residents can pre-register online at or by phone at 1-888-LAHELP-U (1-888-524-3578).


Your eligibility is based on your “disaster gross income” or DGI. When you apply, your caseworker will calculate your DGI.

    1. They add your take-home pay, unearned income (like public assistance payments), and liquid resources (like bank accounts and cash on hand).
    2. Then they subtract your unreimbursed disaster-related expenses.

The maximum DGI is set each year and is based on household size. If your DGI is less than or equal to the maximum, you may qualify for Louisiana D-SNAP.

To see current DGIs for various household sizes visit USDA FNS's SNAP Cost of Living Adjustment (COLA) Information page.The household income limits by size are updated annually, and are listed here.