Eligibility and Application

The State of Minnesota knows you need a certain amount of money each month to pay for basic needs. This amount is called the MSA assistance standard. There are seven MSA assistance standards. You will qualify for a different assistance standard depending on whether you live alone, with others, or are married.

Who Can Get MSA?

To get an MSA grant, you must:

  • Live in Minnesota
  • Be 18 years old or older
  • Either:
    • Get SSI, or
    • Not get an SSI payment only because you have countable income or countable assets that are too high for SSI. Your income must still be below the MSA assistance standard that applies to you (see the example). In other words, if your SSI stops because of work or other income, you may still be able to get MSA if your income is under certain limits. If you are not getting an SSI payment, you must be elderly, blind, or disabled according to Social Security or the State Medical Review Team (SMRT). You must also have income below the gross income test. Gross income is the combined amount of all your earned and unearned income.

The gross income limit for MSA is:

  • For individuals: $2,313/month in 2019 (300% of FBR for an individual)
  • For eligible couples: $4,626/month in 2019 (600% of FBR for an individual)

Applying for MSA

Most people who get Supplemental Security Income (SSI) qualify for MSA. However, you do not automatically get MSA even if you are getting SSI or other benefits. You have to apply separately for MSA.

You can apply for MSA online using ApplyMN. You may also apply using the Combined Application Form and turning it in to your county human services agency. You may apply for Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) at the same time.

Note: If you’ve already been getting assistance from the county, you should call them and ask what you should do. You may not need to file another application at all.

Filling Out the Combined Application Form (CAF)

When you fill out the CAF, you’ll need to give information about:

  • Who lives with you and their relationships to you
  • Your citizenship and resident status
  • Your employment status
  • Your bank accounts
  • Other assets
  • Vehicles you own

You may need to provide documents such as:

  • Your identification
  • Your SSI award letter
  • The title to your vehicle
  • Copies of your bank statements
  • Pay stubs