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Does the income of an immigrant’s sponsor count?

Produced by Massachusetts Law Reform Institute
Reviewed March 2023

If you receive financial support directly from the sponsor to pay for living expenses, that money treated as countable unearned income in calculating your benefits. 106 C.M.R. § 363.220(B)(7)



Johann is an LPR from Germany. Every month his sponsor sends him a $500 payment. DTA will calculate Johann’s SNAP benefits counting $500 of unearned income.

Sponsor’s income you do not receive does not count if you are “indigent” (very low-income) and you do not receive any payments from the sponsor. “Deeming” is a legal term that means counting income from a third party – such as a sponsor – that you do not actually receive but is assumed to be available.

DTA Online Guide: See Appendix G for links to the DTA's BEACON 5 Online Guide for this section.


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