BENEFITS PLUS ® ONLINE

Solving the Public Benefit Puzzle

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Welcome to Benefits Plus

Benefits Plus ® is the premier comprehensive, searchable online resource on over 80 different federal, state and local government benefit programs for social service professionals.

Written by experienced advocates, reviewed by legal experts, and updated regularly, Benefits Plus provides the information professionals need to better assist their clients. Professionals will learn how a program works, how to access the benefit and what steps to take when action is needed. Get all of this plus access to valuable resources, government contacts, and more.


Explore Benefits Plus!

If you are not a subscriber to Benefits Plus, you can tour it by clicking on any of the 9 different categories on the right. Each category contains chapters related to that category topic. When you click on a chapter, you will be able to view the chapter's outline, as well as open the “Overview” section.

Want to learn more? Want to participate in a webinar presentation of Benefits Plus? Contact the Benefits Plus Learning Center at bplc@cssny.org.

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Benefits Plus Updates

Originally published in January 2010 Benefits Plus® is updated regularly throughout the calendar year as changes occur in a program's guidelines or procedures.

The chart below lists a few of the most recent updates; not all updates are listed below. To view all updates/changes since publication, go to an individual chapter (for example, Cash Assistance), click on a section (for example, Qualifying for Cash Assistance). Once there, click on "Show updates" in the upper right hand corner of the blue header to reveal the current year's updates, additions, revisions, and corrections, if any, that have been made to that section since publication.

To view updates in prior years, click on a selected year. In addition, experts in the subject area periodically review the individual chapters; this information is found under "Show updates" listed as "Expert Review Date".

Chapter Last Updated Change
Home Energy Assistance Program (HEAP) November 2019

Description of HEAP: There is no change in the HEAP benefit amounts for the 2019-2020 season.

Qualifying for HEAP: Updated the HEAP income eligibility guidelines for the 2019-2020 season.

Medicare Part D October 2019

Low-Income Subsidy: Updated the income and resource guidelines for the LIS.

Description of Medicare Part D: Updated information on the 2020 Part D basic plan, including the deductible , coverage gap, catastrophic benefit period amounts, as well as case examples and the additional premium amounts for high income Medicare Part D beneficiaries.

Cash Assistance October 2019

Housing Subsidies: Revised section on “Calculating the FHEPS Supplement.”

Housing Subsidies: Updated FHEPS and CITYFHEPS maximum rent allowed.

Housing Court October 2019

Holdover Proceedings: Updated information about notice requirements to terminate a month-to-month tenancy or expiration of a lease in unregulated housing, notice of termination, and notice of non-renewal, as a result of the Housing Stability and Tenant Protection Act of 2019.

Unemployment Insurance Benefits October 2019

Qualifying for Unemployment Insurance: Updated the level of maximum wages required to be eligible.

Description of Unemployment Insurance: Updated the maximum amount of weekly UI benefits and earnings required to qualify for UIB.

Immigrants' Eligibility for Benefits October 2019

Public Charge: Revised entire section.

Public Housing October 2019

Tenancy Terminations and Evictions: Added information about NYCHA residents' "Right to Counsel" during termination of tenancy hearings at NYCHA's Office of Impartial Hearings.

Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) October 2019

Qualifying for SNAP: Updated gross income guidelines and monthly SNAP allotment.

Budgeting the SNAP Benefit Amount: Updated SNAP deductions and excess shelter costs.