Help us protect Louisiana's children. Report Child Abuse & Neglect: 1-855-4LA-KIDS (1-855-452-5437) toll-free, 24 hours a day, seven days a week
Able-Bodied Adult Without Dependents (ABAWD)
Beginning October 1, 2023, some Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) recipients will have to follow federal Able-Bodied Adult Without Dependents (ABAWD) work requirement rules to continue receiving SNAP benefits.
Who is an ABAWD
A SNAP recipient classified as an Able Bodied Adult Without Dependents (ABAWD) can receive benefits for only three months in a 36-month period unless they meet the ABAWD Work Requirement or qualify for an exemption. For Louisianans, this time limit period is October 2023 – March 2026, because Louisiana had a statewide waiver for April–September 2023. A SNAP recipient is classified as an ABAWD if the individual is:
- Physically or mentally fit for work,
- not living with a child under the age of 18
- between the ages of 18 (beginning the month after their eighteen birthday) through 52.
ABAWDs meeting the ABAWD Work Requirement
ABAWDs meeting the ABAWD Work Requirement can receive SNAP as long as they meet the requirement. An ABAWD can meet the ABAWD Work Requirement by:
Work at least 80 hrs/month
Participate in job training or approved activity for 80 hrs/month
A combination of both for 80 hrs/month
Need help determining how to meet work requirements, view the SNAP Work Rule broken down here.
Who is not classified as an ABAWD?
The following individuals are not classified as ABAWDs and do not have to meet the ABAWD Work Requirement or meet an exemption:
- Under 18,
- 53 or older,
- Pregnant, or
- Physically or mentally unable to work.
Who can receive an exemption?
You may not need to meet the AWBWD Work Requirement if you are:
- Taking care of a child younger than age 6 or someone who needs help caring for themselves.
- Already working at least 30 hours a week.
- Already earning $217.50 or more per week.
- Receiving unemployment benefits, or an applicant for unemployment benefits.
- Not working because of a physical or mental health condition.
- Attending school, college, or a training program at least half time*.
- Meeting the work rules for Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF).
- Participating in a drug or alcohol addiction treatment program.
- Experiencing homelessness**.
- A veteran***.
- Age 18-24 who were in foster care on their eighteenth birthday.
- Living in a waived parish.
SNAP recipients who meet the ABAWD description and believe they qualify for an exemption must contact DCFS by emailing LAHelpU.DCFS@la.gov or calling 1-888-LA-HELP-U (1-888-524-3578) to verify and document their exemption.
*An institution of higher education determines what is considered half-time enrollment. Your college, university, or school can tell you your enrollment status.
**An individual who is experiencing homelessness is defined as an individual who lacks a fixed and regular nighttime residence.
***A veteran is an individual who served in the Armed Forces, including an individual who served in a reserve component of the Armed Forces, and who was discharged or released therefrom, regardless of the conditions of such discharge or release.
Age Requirement Chart
The age requirement for ABAWDs changed and will update periodically. Please see the details in the chart below.
|Effective Date||ABAWD Age Limit||Application/Redermination Received Date|
|Current||18-49||Through August 31, 2023|
|September 1, 2023||18-50||Received on or after September 1, 2023|
|October 1, 2023||18-52||Received on or after September 1, 2023|
|October 1, 2024||18-54||Received on or after September 1, 2023|