Man Still Receives Food Stamps After Winning $2 Million Jackpot

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I am posting this again because I know many readers have not seen it yet

Wow… I am in shock… I posted this last night on the Budget Savvy Diva Facebook – but I thought I should let all my readers know about it. I love being able to tell y’all what is happening in the couponing and consumer world. I would love your thoughts on the subject – because I am in shock.

A Michigan man who won $2 million from a state lottery is reportedly still eligible to receive food stamps. I know right!

Here is why:

Eligibility for food stamps is based on gross income and follows federal guidelines; lottery winnings are considered liquid assets and don’t count as income. As long as Fick’s gross income stays below the eligibility requirement for food stamps, he can receive them, even if he has a million dollars in the bank.

“If you’re going to try to make me feel bad, you’re not going to do it,” Fick told WNEM-TV in Saginaw on Monday.

Food stamps are paid for through tax dollars and are meant to help support low-income families.

Nearly 1.9 million Michigan residents are enrolled in the food assistance program. More than 805,000 are children, according to the Detroit Free Press.

In 2009, the Office of Inspector General investigated more than 2,600 food assistance complaints, finding more than $5 million in fraud.

Though the food stamp program is federal and states must follow U.S. guidelines, states sometimes request waivers of rules. Michigan was granted a waiver recently to stop college students from qualifying for food stamps.

What are YOUR thoughts on the subject??

Thanks! Fox News 

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  • Vanessa Dolby

    Wow–this makes me really mad–what a horrible attitude on his part. They need to change the laws to keep this kind of thing from happening. I know people who use food stamps only because they have to–hard working, honest people who hate being on any kind of assistance and this guy abuses the system. I hope they figure out a way to change things and make him pay back what he has stolen from the government.

  • Holly

    You know what they say about karma…

    This guy has it coming to him. Time for legislation to fix that loophole!

  • P B

    This is horrible. Students can’t receive them but a LOTTERY winner can.
    Someone should file charges on the State. He is such a horrible person.!
    I know ppl who make 200/wk and can not collect.

  • tb

    I understand the shock, but I really don’t have a huge problem with it. I’m sure he’s worked in the past and has therefore likely paid taxes. I’m not saying, “well, he worked in the past so he’s earned the right to be on food stamps now, even if he did win 2M in the lottery.” I mean that he’s likely worked in the past & paid taxes then — and who’s to say he’s not working now, except he’s just earning below the poverty line LIKE MANY OF US ARE. So, I can’t blame him. And his remark to the TV station, I’ll bet was in response to something they said or brought up — fyi, the media likes to dig, and dig, and dig, and make things WAY more sensationalized than what they really are (to the point of making it something that it isn’t). Anyway, there ARE worse things people do to actually ILLEGALLY steal from the government. Like I said, I don’t blame him. We all do what we have to to get by, and he happened to luck out on a boost most of us never will.

  • Chrystal @ Chrystal's Corner

    Seems to be the trend these days…people find loopholes in the system and are proud of it. This may not be the popular opinion but I would even go as far to say that I don’t believe people who are needing assistance like food stamps should be buying lottery tickets. That of course is my personal opinion and I don’t want to start that debate of what should and shouldn’t be a condition of food stamps.
    I do think that if Michigan can bend the rules to keep college students from getting food stamps they can again change the rules to keep lottery winners (of a set earning) from getting them as well.

  • Aimee

    Okay, I am a college student and luckily I don’t have to pay rent, otherwise I would not be able to feed myself, even with couponing. Maybe keeping on campus college students from getting them is fine but what about those kids who have families, can’t afford dorm fees (it’s so much cheaper to live off campus), and don’t have a cafeteria meal plan? I just this this is ridiculous. That man clearly doesn’t need the stamps. I wish they would really crack down on food stamps, I know a lot of families in my town who do NOT NEED them. If you can buy cigarettes and alcohol in the same grocery line while buying food on your food stamps I think some investigating needs to be done. I’m sorry but as a college student I’m really upset by this, especially since I pay all of my bills (but rent) and feed myself, younger brother, and dad on my $600/month income.

  • CaySedai

    If the person receives a lump sum payment it’s not counted at income – but it’s supposed to be counted as resources! And federal guidelines state: Households may have $2,000 in countable resources, such as a bank account, or $3000 in countable resources if at least one person is age 60 or older, or is disabled.

    I think this man has more than $2,000/$3,000 in countable resources. There are also guidelines about how much your car can be worth, although some states don’t count the first car and 39 states don’t count the cars at all. (I had a link to federal food stamp guidelines here, but the spam filter won’t take it. Do a search federal food stamp guidelines to find it.)

    I wonder how much he’s getting in interest on his money? Because I think interest is included as income, as well.

    Maybe the state of Michigan needs to have a rule about lottery winnings. I know the state of Iowa wants FS recipients to report them, or even if they redeem pop cans/bottles for 5 cents each.

  • Julie

    I don’t think it is right at all. The whole point is to help ‘supplement’ a family so they can eat. He can eat on 2 million dollars. And, so he paid taxes at one time. So does a majority of people that have never used the system. It is abuse, and should be stopped. I think to help with the issue of fraud, food stamps should be only good for certain items. Now, people are going to say that isn’t fair, discriminatory, etc., but think about it. Women that are on WIC (Women, Infant, Children) programs, they are allotted only certain foods. The grocery stores are nice enough to post signs that read ‘WIC Approved’, so the person knows which foods are available to them. I think it should be the same for food stamps. After all, food stamps are supposed to be help for a short period of time, not a lifestyle choice. If needs are being met, yet it isn’t too ‘comfortable’, people will want to change their situation. If you need them, truly need food stamps, they would be available. You would be able to feed your family good, nutritious food, until you were able to provide again. I think this would also cut fraud way down. I don’t think you would be able to sell your food stamps for drugs if all you could buy were nutritious foods with them. It always reminds me of the “give a man a fish, he’ll eat for a day; teach a man to fish, and he will eat for a lifetime.” quote. If we help teach/educate people, instead of just trying to put bandaids on, it could really change peoples lives. Just a thought! =)

  • Zhandra

    What state is this in?? Because here in Florida they DO count your assets when assessing you for government assistance. A few years ago, I was pregnant with my daughter, I had no job and her father was making a measly $60/week, and we had no medical insurance either. We tried to apply for food stamps and/or medicaid, and they told us we had too much money in the bank! We had $5k we had painstakingly saved up, in case there were emergency complications with my pregnancy and birth since we didn’t have insurance, an emergency C-section costs over $12k… they told us we did not qualify because you could not have more than $2k in the bank. So we pretty much ate dirt and thankfully my out-of-hospital birth went smoothly…

  • Anne

    This is crazy. My family was without a job for more than 7 months. We had used all of our savings by the time I got a job. We had to move 11 hours away so that one of us could finally have a full time job. We applied for food stamps because we has $30 in the bank and no saving. Because I had gotten a job and wouldn’t get paid for another month, they said when I got paid I’d make $200 a month too much. How was I supposed to feed my 18 month old and brand new baby much less my family. This is just crazy. People who really need the help and are actually working and trying to make ends meet can’t get the help because of situations like this.

  • Julie ~

    Wow! So not right! My husband was unemployed for 2 years and my paycheck barely covered our bills. We were able to get a 1 time heat assistance and my child qualified for reduced lunches at school. They said I made too much to qualify for food stamps. This guy totally burns me up!~

  • Jaime

    This guy makes me sick. Their are hundreds of kids who don’t have much to eat. What is wrong with our government!!!!!!! Lots of people who need food stamps can’t get them but he does. Two years ago I was pregnant with my fourth child my husband lost his job. He found a part time job that payed the bills but didn’t leave us much for food each month. We made to much too get food stamps. This story makes me really mad. The laws need to change so people who need food stamps can get them and people who abuse the system should go to jail.

  • anna

    I think it’s sick that he can live off of our hard earned tax dollars. No wonder why his state budget is in the toilet. If we all lived like the federal and state governments did we would be jobless and homeless. It’s time to stop the spending and tell people to stop being mooches. Last winter my business slowed down to a crawl but we made it off of $1200 per month eating less and finding other things to make. We cut our bills down and had more blankets. We lived within our means without asking the state for money. If more people did the same instead of demanding everything be given to them then their kids might not grow up like spoiled brats and our property prices will be worth something again.

    And for the person okay with it because “he worked the system too” omg, how much money do you think the system has? That’s like the eco-fascist people complaining about world population and environment yet still letting refugees and illegal aliens in without question. Get a clue.

  • cecilia w styles

    man thats crazy once I was laid off my job well at the time I was single w/2 kids but had about $3000.00 in the bank my home THANK GOD was almost pd for but no insurance for kids no child support etc, they told me I could not get them b/c Igot 175.00 wkly and had 3000.00 in the bank it was ok we made it THANK GOD again but for him to have 2mill and get food stamps seems like fruad to me ,someone could be getting them that may need them more than him ,I dont get it I really dont something is really wrong no wonder the goverment says its broke ……..makes my flesh raise ………….

  • Cathy

    When my husband lost his job we were on food stamps for a while. They looked at everything. Not just income. He received an inheritance from his sister that we used to pay the mortgage down, and it knocked us off of food stamps completely.

  • Amanda

    Thats insane! I right now get food stamps, but I am in college with small kids. I am not going to be collecting forever. My husband is a certified police officer with no department because there are no jobs. We have custody of our niece and have three other children. People like us should get not people cheating the system. If it were up to me, we wouldn’t be on assistance. A lottery winner would not get food stamps in this state. It counts as assets. I am in florida.

    • love working from home

      it is crazy. it’s people like him that ruin it for people who need it and waste our tax dollars. why doesn’t your husband start his own security business or something? times like these are when the biggest and best businesses are started. not trying to tell him what to do, but it’s something until the economy picks up again and these kinds of businesses along with tax cuts are what help a failing economy.

      • love working from home

        **like him meant the guy on food stamps and NOT your hubby. your hubby does an honorable job, but he might feel better running a biz and working instead of being home. sometimes i just write the way i say it when i’m “chatting” 🙂

  • Karren

    When I was 18, I was married with a baby. My husband was self-employed in construction and made very little money. I went to apply for food stamps and my caseworker told me that I needed to sell our ONLY car for money first. I told her there was NO chance of that due to employment and emergency reasons! She finally got over herself and let us qualify. This individual (have to censor myself haha) should be asked to do the same thing! I’m sure I had to provide ALL of my bank info back then. So, HE is allowed to take money from taxpayers……can taxpayers ask for their money from him??

  • Amy Garcia

    This just ticks me off! They won’t count lotto winnings, but they count gross income instead of net. We can’t get any food assistance because of our gross, but that isn’t even wjat we see. After they pull money out for our healtth insurance and taxes, we bring home not enough to cover all our bills. 2 kids in diapers and a 4 year old with a birthday soon, and we have to alternate our bills monthly to keep above water, and we’re always behind, but we can’t get assistance with food because of what we make before they take out a firstborn for health insurance. We make it work, as long as the kids are fed first. Why can’t this guy make 2 million work? What an ass! There really are kids who have nothing to eat, and he’s so greedy he doesn’t care. Does he even have kids to feed? I’m glad we pay a good amount of taxes out of our check so our kids can go without and he can buy an entire grocery store and stock its shelves with his food stamps. The taxpayers should serve up a little justice the govt won’t hand out!

  • Tricia

    he won 2 million dollars…what in the Heck does he need food stamps for? What a greedy you-know-what. Someone needs to give this guy a conscience and a wake up call.

  • Rebeca

    This makes me so mad. I am originally from MI and when I had my daughter I was single my ex refused to pay child support and I made no money they would only give me $10 in food stamps a month for me and my daughter. That is right $10 for the whole month and I had a brand new baby that needed formula and had to feed myself this man now has more money than he will be able to spend before he dies and he can still get food stamps no problem. WTF!!!!!!!! I am so angry after reading this you have no idea this is why I stopped even asking for help because it goes to the wrong people.