6. Can you qualify if you are pregnant and do not have a child living with you?

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Notas finales

Massachusetts Law Reform Institute

If you are age 20 or older, you are pregnant, and you have no other children living with you, you can get TAFDC – for yourself only – beginning with your third trimester (week 27 or 120 days before your due date). If you are a teen (under age 20), you are pregnant, you have no other children living with you, and you are meeting the teen school attendance requirements, see the school attendance rules for teen parents and pregnant teens, you can get TAFDC – for yourself only as soon as the pregnancy is verified. 106 C.M.R. § 703.210; Appendix E (DTA Online Guide Links).

If you are living with but not married to the baby’s other parent, the other parent’s income should not be counted until the baby is born. 106 C.M.R. §§ 704.210, 704.235(c).

You should begin the application process several weeks before your eligibility date in order to get benefits as soon as you are eligible.


Carolyn is pregnant and is due on December 16. She can get TAFDC beginning on August 18 (120 days before her due date). She should apply in July.

Advocacy Reminders

  • A pregnant individual not yet eligible for TAFDC may be eligible for EAEDC cash benefits if the individual has a disability.
  • Pregnant individuals at any stage of pregnancy may also be eligible for MassHealth; SNAP (food stamps); and WIC (Women, Infants and Children) nutrition benefits through the Department of Public Health, 1-800-WIC-1007. Homeless pregnant individuals may also be eligible for emergency shelter for families through the Department of Housing and Community Development.
  • The restrictions on eligibility for pregnant individuals are a holdover from federal law before 1996. Nothing in federal law bars Massachusetts from providing benefits to pregnant individuals at the beginning of their pregnancy.


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