Railroad Income Benefits
Information on this page refers to the Nutrition Assistance program Information on this page refers to the Cash Assistance program
This subject includes information about benefits paid to qualified railroad employees and dependents.
Payments to a participant from the Railroad Retirement Board (RRB) are countable unearned income.
When participants are eligible for Social Security and Railroad, the benefits are combined into one payment issued by the RRB.
Railroad benefits include and are not limited to any of the following:
Retirement benefits
Disability benefits
Spouse, dependent, and survivor’s benefits
Countable income is used to determine an income budget. (See Income Budgeting to see how FAA determines the income budget.) FAA needs to know about income that is both countable and not countable to determine whether a budgetary unit’s income is exceeding their expenses. (See Income Eligibility for more information about how FAA uses countable and not countable income.)
The participant has the primary responsibility for providing verification. (See Participant Responsibilities – Providing Verification for additional policy.)
For NA, all of the following income is required to be verified before eligibility is determined:
Reported on a new application, during the interview of a new application, or changes reported before the eligibility determination of a new application.
Changes after an eligibility determination of a new application (e.g., a renewal application, mid approval contact, etc.) and any of the following apply:
The source of the income has changed.
The income is questionable(g) or unclear(g).
The reported income amount has changed by $51 or more.
The previous verification in the case file is more than 59 calendar days old.
For CA, all income is required to be verified before determining eligibility.
Examples of verification that can be used for Railroad Retirement Income include, and are not limited to, any of the following:
Benefit award letters from Social Security Administration (SSA), Statement of Earnings Veteran’s Administration (VA), RRB, and other agencies
Bank records
Signed statement from the agency or payer providing the income
Collateral Contact
Participant statement verification when any of the following occur:
Other attempts to obtain verification have failed
Obtaining documented or collateral contact verification may cause harm or undue hardship(g) for the participant.
NOTE A participant’s statement is not allowed to verify income when it is considered questionable.
Legal Authorities
7 CFR 273.9(b)(2)(ii)
last revised 10/02/2023