DC Court Strikes Down USDA’s ABAWD Rule Change


Published on Oct 19, 2020 in CalFresh

We have some good news to share, and a thank you to extend! Today, the U.S. District Court for D.C. struck down USDA’s proposed final rule on SNAP/CalFresh time limits from taking effect. For the 700,000 household that were expected to lose SNAP (CalFresh in CA) under the waiver changes, this is very welcome news.

Read the court memorandum and order.

Read the Washington Post’s coverage here.

Thank you

CFPA and our anti-hunger partners would like to thank our network of supporters and stakeholders for your tireless work to submit and garner public comments, inform media and decision makers, and empower communities to voice opposition to the harmful rule. We thank you all, and know that we could not have reached this positive outcome without you. A special thanks to our extraordinary national partners at the Center on Budget & Policy Priorities, FRAC, and Feeding America who were exceptional leaders and organizers. And our thanks go out to Governor Gavin Newsom and Attorney General Xavier Becerra for their leadership in joining the litigation efforts.

What this means and what’s next

On March 13, 2020, the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia issued an order to temporarily block stricter work requirements in USDA’s SNAP ABAWD rule scheduled to take effect on April 1, 2020. The order stayed most of the SNAP ABAWD final rule, while the district court moved forward with reviewing whether to reverse the rule. On March 18, 2020, Congress enacted the Families First Coronavirus Response Act, which suspended existing work requirements for ABAWDs during the pandemic. Today’s decision formally strikes down the entire rule. Proposed rules on SNAP Categorical Eligibility and on the SNAP Standard Utility Allowance have not yet been issued in final.

CFPA and our anti-hunger partners will continue to work with CDSS and county administrators to ensure that any time limit rules are implemented in a way that prioritizes keeping clients connected to CalFresh benefits. Please stay tuned for more updates from CFPA on how you can help protect food assistance for low-income Californians.

Stay up to date by signing up for our Action Alerts and following us at @CAFoodPolicy.


Contact: Melissa Cannon at 209.200.8446 or Jared Call at 323.401.4972.


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