What if I was getting SNAP in another state or DTA says I am part of another SNAP household?

Produced by Massachusetts Law Reform Institute
Reviewed March 2023

You cannot get SNAP in two states at the same time. This is called “duplicate participation,” which is a serious offense if you do it intentionally. 7 C.F.R. §273.3(a).(link is external) But you can ask DTA to help you close your SNAP case in another state, or remove you from someone else's SNAP household if you have moved out.

SNAP in other states

If you were getting SNAP in a different state and you move to Massachusetts, you need to ask the SNAP state agency in the state you left to close your SNAP case. If you have proof your SNAP was closed in the other state (such as a case closure notice), give that to DTA. If you are unable to get proof that the former state closed your SNAP case, DTA should offer to do a "collateral contact" (contact the sister state) state to verify that your benefits are closed and the date they were closed.

DTA should approve your SNAP for a date that does not overlap with when you last got SNAP in the other state.


Maria moves to Massachusetts from Maine in August. She asks Maine to close her SNAP. Maine closes her SNAP effective September 1. She applies for SNAP in Massachusetts on August 15. DTA calls Maine to confirm that her case was closed, and approves her SNAP going back to September 1. DTA cannot approve her case going back to August 15 because of the duplicate issuance rules.

Your SNAP in Massachusetts should not be delayed because you cannot get proof from the other state and the other state is not responsive to DTA. DTA should make the request to the other state and then approve your case.

.If DTA does not help you and/or your SNAP in Massachusetts is delayed because of issues with your SNAP case in another state, contact MLRI at [email protected].

If you move out of a SNAP household

If you were living in a SNAP household, and you move out, it is important that the SNAP head of household, tell DTA that you have left so that DTA can remove you from that case. If that is not an option (for example, because you left a dangerous situation or are not on good terms with the family you left, you can still apply for SNAP and tell DTA you have moved. DTA may attempt to do a collateral contact, but they should also accept your word you have left. DTA should remove you from the SNAP household you are no longer a part of, and approve your own SNAP benefits.

If you moved because of a domestic violence situation, DTA should never ask you to get proof from the state or household you fled. Contact a DTA Domestic Violence specialist for help. See What if I have concerns about my safety and access to my case information?

Contact MLRI at [email protected] if DTA refuses to give you SNAP or delays your SNAP because of a “duplicate issuance” issue. 

DTA Online Guide: See Appendix G for links to the DTA’s BEACON Online Guide for this section.


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