Poverty Rate by State

Poverty is defined as not having enough income to meet one’s basic needs. This is for items such as food, clothing, housing, and the like. Poverty can be caused by various social, economic, and political elements such as unemployment, limited access to education, systematic discrimination and marginalization to name a few.  

In the United States, the poverty guidelines are determined by the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), and are updated every year in the Federal Register; the poverty guidelines will change depending on the size of the household. These guidelines are used for administrative purposes, as they help to determine someone’s poverty status. In 2021, the poverty guidelines for the mainland United States were $12,880 for a single person over a year and $17,420 for two people, increasing to $44,660 for a house of eight and then an additional $4,540 for every person above that. Therefore, if a single individual were to have less than $12,880 a year, they would be considered to be in a state of poverty, and would possibly be eligible for certain federal and local programs. 

The Census Bureau found that 13.15% of the total population (or 42.31 million Americans) lived below the poverty line in 2020. However, this population is not distributed equally over the country; poverty rates differ greatly from one state to another.   

Learn for yourself how poverty rates can change by state by browsing the data in the charts.

Poverty Rate by State

Alabama - Poverty Rate

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14.9%

#7 in the US

MEDIAN HOUSEHOLD INCOMEhelp

$56,929

#46 in the US

MINIMUM WAGEhelp

$7.25

#32 in the US

PERSONAL INCOME PER CAPITAhelp

$48,540

#49 in the US

Alaska - Poverty Rate

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9.6%

#37 in the US

MEDIAN HOUSEHOLD INCOMEhelp

$81,133

#12 in the US

MINIMUM WAGEhelp

$10.34

#20 in the US

PERSONAL INCOME PER CAPITAhelp

$67,742

#12 in the US

Arizona - Poverty Rate

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12.8%

#14 in the US

MEDIAN HOUSEHOLD INCOMEhelp

$70,821

#28 in the US

MINIMUM WAGEhelp

$12.8

#8 in the US

PERSONAL INCOME PER CAPITAhelp

$54,422

#41 in the US

Arkansas - Poverty Rate

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15.2%

#4 in the US

MEDIAN HOUSEHOLD INCOMEhelp

$50,784

#49 in the US

MINIMUM WAGEhelp

$11

#16 in the US

PERSONAL INCOME PER CAPITAhelp

$50,943

#46 in the US

California - Poverty Rate

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11.5%

#23 in the US

MEDIAN HOUSEHOLD INCOMEhelp

$81,575

#11 in the US

MINIMUM WAGEhelp

$15

#1 in the US

PERSONAL INCOME PER CAPITAhelp

$77,211

#4 in the US

Colorado - Poverty Rate

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9%

#38 in the US

MEDIAN HOUSEHOLD INCOMEhelp

$84,954

#8 in the US

MINIMUM WAGEhelp

$12.56

#9 in the US

PERSONAL INCOME PER CAPITAhelp

$70,764

#9 in the US

Connecticut - Poverty Rate

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9.7%

#39 in the US

MEDIAN HOUSEHOLD INCOMEhelp

$80,958

#13 in the US

MINIMUM WAGEhelp

$14

#3 in the US

PERSONAL INCOME PER CAPITAhelp

$82,918

#3 in the US

Delaware - Poverty Rate

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10.9%

#28 in the US

MEDIAN HOUSEHOLD INCOMEhelp

$68,687

#32 in the US

MINIMUM WAGEhelp

$10.5

#21 in the US

PERSONAL INCOME PER CAPITAhelp

$59,998

#24 in the US

District of Columbia - Poverty Rate

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15%

#5 in the US

MEDIAN HOUSEHOLD INCOMEhelp

$90,640

#2 in the US

MINIMUM WAGEhelp

$15.2

#2 in the US

PERSONAL INCOME PER CAPITAhelp

$98,317

#1 in the US

Florida - Poverty Rate

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12.4%

#15 in the US

MEDIAN HOUSEHOLD INCOMEhelp

$59,734

#44 in the US

MINIMUM WAGEhelp

$10

#22 in the US

PERSONAL INCOME PER CAPITAhelp

$61,529

#21 in the US

Georgia - Poverty Rate

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14%

#8 in the US

MEDIAN HOUSEHOLD INCOMEhelp

$61,497

#42 in the US

MINIMUM WAGEhelp

$7.25

#33 in the US

PERSONAL INCOME PER CAPITAhelp

$55,366

#37 in the US

Hawaii - Poverty Rate

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8.9%

#48 in the US

MEDIAN HOUSEHOLD INCOMEhelp

$82,199

#9 in the US

MINIMUM WAGEhelp

$10.1

#23 in the US

PERSONAL INCOME PER CAPITAhelp

$58,967

#28 in the US

Idaho - Poverty Rate

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10.1%

#29 in the US

MEDIAN HOUSEHOLD INCOMEhelp

$76,918

#18 in the US

MINIMUM WAGEhelp

$7.25

#34 in the US

PERSONAL INCOME PER CAPITAhelp

$52,021

#45 in the US

Illinois - Poverty Rate

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11%

#24 in the US

MEDIAN HOUSEHOLD INCOMEhelp

$79,253

#16 in the US

MINIMUM WAGEhelp

$12

#10 in the US

PERSONAL INCOME PER CAPITAhelp

$67,767

#11 in the US

Indiana - Poverty Rate

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11.6%

#25 in the US

MEDIAN HOUSEHOLD INCOMEhelp

$70,190

#29 in the US

MINIMUM WAGEhelp

$7.25

#35 in the US

PERSONAL INCOME PER CAPITAhelp

$56,644

#33 in the US

Iowa - Poverty Rate

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10.2%

#30 in the US

MEDIAN HOUSEHOLD INCOMEhelp

$72,429

#25 in the US

MINIMUM WAGEhelp

$7.25

#36 in the US

PERSONAL INCOME PER CAPITAhelp

$57,012

#31 in the US

Kansas - Poverty Rate

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10.6%

#31 in the US

MEDIAN HOUSEHOLD INCOMEhelp

$75,979

#20 in the US

MINIMUM WAGEhelp

$7.25

#37 in the US

PERSONAL INCOME PER CAPITAhelp

$59,660

#25 in the US

Kentucky - Poverty Rate

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14.9%

#9 in the US

MEDIAN HOUSEHOLD INCOMEhelp

$55,629

#47 in the US

MINIMUM WAGEhelp

$7.25

#38 in the US

PERSONAL INCOME PER CAPITAhelp

$50,713

#47 in the US

Louisiana - Poverty Rate

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17.8%

#2 in the US

MEDIAN HOUSEHOLD INCOMEhelp

$57,206

#45 in the US

MINIMUM WAGEhelp

$7.25

#39 in the US

PERSONAL INCOME PER CAPITAhelp

$54,074

#42 in the US

Maine - Poverty Rate

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10.6%

#32 in the US

MEDIAN HOUSEHOLD INCOMEhelp

$71,139

#26 in the US

MINIMUM WAGEhelp

$12.75

#11 in the US

PERSONAL INCOME PER CAPITAhelp

$57,319

#30 in the US

Maryland - Poverty Rate

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9%

#40 in the US

MEDIAN HOUSEHOLD INCOMEhelp

$97,332

#1 in the US

MINIMUM WAGEhelp

$12.5

#12 in the US

PERSONAL INCOME PER CAPITAhelp

$69,694

#10 in the US

Massachusetts - Poverty Rate

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9.4%

#41 in the US

MEDIAN HOUSEHOLD INCOMEhelp

$86,566

#7 in the US

MINIMUM WAGEhelp

$14.25

#4 in the US

PERSONAL INCOME PER CAPITAhelp

$83,229

#2 in the US

Michigan - Poverty Rate

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12.6%

#16 in the US

MEDIAN HOUSEHOLD INCOMEhelp

$64,488

#35 in the US

MINIMUM WAGEhelp

$9.87

#25 in the US

PERSONAL INCOME PER CAPITAhelp

$54,684

#40 in the US

Minnesota - Poverty Rate

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8.3%

#49 in the US

MEDIAN HOUSEHOLD INCOMEhelp

$80,441

#14 in the US

MINIMUM WAGEhelp

$10.33

#24 in the US

PERSONAL INCOME PER CAPITAhelp

$65,579

#16 in the US

Mississippi - Poverty Rate

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18.7%

#1 in the US

MEDIAN HOUSEHOLD INCOMEhelp

$46,637

#51 in the US

MINIMUM WAGEhelp

$7.25

#40 in the US

PERSONAL INCOME PER CAPITAhelp

$44,796

#51 in the US

Missouri - Poverty Rate

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12.1%

#17 in the US

MEDIAN HOUSEHOLD INCOMEhelp

$63,594

#37 in the US

MINIMUM WAGEhelp

$11.15

#17 in the US

PERSONAL INCOME PER CAPITAhelp

$55,141

#39 in the US

Montana - Poverty Rate

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12.4%

#18 in the US

MEDIAN HOUSEHOLD INCOMEhelp

$64,999

#34 in the US

MINIMUM WAGEhelp

$9.2

#26 in the US

PERSONAL INCOME PER CAPITAhelp

$56,936

#32 in the US

Nebraska - Poverty Rate

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9.2%

#42 in the US

MEDIAN HOUSEHOLD INCOMEhelp

$78,109

#17 in the US

MINIMUM WAGEhelp

$9

#27 in the US

PERSONAL INCOME PER CAPITAhelp

$62,776

#19 in the US

Nevada - Poverty Rate

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12.5%

#19 in the US

MEDIAN HOUSEHOLD INCOMEhelp

$64,340

#36 in the US

MINIMUM WAGEhelp

$9.5

#28 in the US

PERSONAL INCOME PER CAPITAhelp

$58,451

#29 in the US

New Hampshire - Poverty Rate

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7%

#50 in the US

MEDIAN HOUSEHOLD INCOMEhelp

$88,841

#3 in the US

MINIMUM WAGEhelp

$7.25

#41 in the US

PERSONAL INCOME PER CAPITAhelp

$74,229

#7 in the US

New Jersey - Poverty Rate

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9.4%

#43 in the US

MEDIAN HOUSEHOLD INCOMEhelp

$88,559

#4 in the US

MINIMUM WAGEhelp

$13

#6 in the US

PERSONAL INCOME PER CAPITAhelp

$75,086

#6 in the US

New Mexico - Poverty Rate

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16.8%

#3 in the US

MEDIAN HOUSEHOLD INCOMEhelp

$53,463

#48 in the US

MINIMUM WAGEhelp

$11.5

#18 in the US

PERSONAL INCOME PER CAPITAhelp

$49,396

#48 in the US

New York - Poverty Rate

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12.7%

#20 in the US

MEDIAN HOUSEHOLD INCOMEhelp

$72,920

#23 in the US

MINIMUM WAGEhelp

$13.2

#7 in the US

PERSONAL INCOME PER CAPITAhelp

$77,029

#5 in the US

North Carolina - Poverty Rate

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12.9%

#21 in the US

MEDIAN HOUSEHOLD INCOMEhelp

$62,891

#38 in the US

MINIMUM WAGEhelp

$7.25

#42 in the US

PERSONAL INCOME PER CAPITAhelp

$55,654

#36 in the US

North Dakota - Poverty Rate

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10.2%

#33 in the US

MEDIAN HOUSEHOLD INCOMEhelp

$68,882

#31 in the US

MINIMUM WAGEhelp

$7.25

#43 in the US

PERSONAL INCOME PER CAPITAhelp

$65,324

#17 in the US

Ohio - Poverty Rate

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12.6%

#22 in the US

MEDIAN HOUSEHOLD INCOMEhelp

$62,689

#39 in the US

MINIMUM WAGEhelp

$9.3

#29 in the US

PERSONAL INCOME PER CAPITAhelp

$56,548

#34 in the US

Oklahoma - Poverty Rate

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14.3%

#10 in the US

MEDIAN HOUSEHOLD INCOMEhelp

$60,096

#43 in the US

MINIMUM WAGEhelp

$7.25

#44 in the US

PERSONAL INCOME PER CAPITAhelp

$53,579

#43 in the US

Oregon - Poverty Rate

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11%

#26 in the US

MEDIAN HOUSEHOLD INCOMEhelp

$81,855

#10 in the US

MINIMUM WAGEhelp

$12.5

#13 in the US

PERSONAL INCOME PER CAPITAhelp

$60,990

#22 in the US

Pennsylvania - Poverty Rate

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10.9%

#34 in the US

MEDIAN HOUSEHOLD INCOMEhelp

$72,627

#24 in the US

MINIMUM WAGEhelp

$7.25

#45 in the US

PERSONAL INCOME PER CAPITAhelp

$64,370

#18 in the US

Rhode Island - Poverty Rate

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10.6%

#35 in the US

MEDIAN HOUSEHOLD INCOMEhelp

$74,982

#21 in the US

MINIMUM WAGEhelp

$12.25

#14 in the US

PERSONAL INCOME PER CAPITAhelp

$61,726

#20 in the US

South Carolina - Poverty Rate

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13.8%

#11 in the US

MEDIAN HOUSEHOLD INCOMEhelp

$62,542

#40 in the US

MINIMUM WAGEhelp

$7.25

#46 in the US

PERSONAL INCOME PER CAPITAhelp

$52,047

#44 in the US

South Dakota - Poverty Rate

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11.6%

#27 in the US

MEDIAN HOUSEHOLD INCOMEhelp

$73,893

#22 in the US

MINIMUM WAGEhelp

$9.95

#30 in the US

PERSONAL INCOME PER CAPITAhelp

$65,647

#15 in the US

Tennessee - Poverty Rate

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13.6%

#12 in the US

MEDIAN HOUSEHOLD INCOMEhelp

$62,166

#41 in the US

MINIMUM WAGEhelp

$7.25

#47 in the US

PERSONAL INCOME PER CAPITAhelp

$55,315

#38 in the US

Texas - Poverty Rate

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13.4%

#13 in the US

MEDIAN HOUSEHOLD INCOMEhelp

$67,404

#33 in the US

MINIMUM WAGEhelp

$7.25

#48 in the US

PERSONAL INCOME PER CAPITAhelp

$60,427

#23 in the US

Utah - Poverty Rate

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7.3%

#51 in the US

MEDIAN HOUSEHOLD INCOMEhelp

$87,649

#5 in the US

MINIMUM WAGEhelp

$7.25

#49 in the US

PERSONAL INCOME PER CAPITAhelp

$56,268

#35 in the US

Vermont - Poverty Rate

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9.4%

#44 in the US

MEDIAN HOUSEHOLD INCOMEhelp

$76,079

#19 in the US

MINIMUM WAGEhelp

$12.55

#15 in the US

PERSONAL INCOME PER CAPITAhelp

$59,652

#26 in the US

Virginia - Poverty Rate

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9.2%

#45 in the US

MEDIAN HOUSEHOLD INCOMEhelp

$80,268

#15 in the US

MINIMUM WAGEhelp

$11

#19 in the US

PERSONAL INCOME PER CAPITAhelp

$66,396

#13 in the US

Washington - Poverty Rate

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9.5%

#46 in the US

MEDIAN HOUSEHOLD INCOMEhelp

$87,648

#6 in the US

MINIMUM WAGEhelp

$14.49

#5 in the US

PERSONAL INCOME PER CAPITAhelp

$72,163

#8 in the US

West Virginia - Poverty Rate

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15.8%

#6 in the US

MEDIAN HOUSEHOLD INCOMEhelp

$46,836

#50 in the US

MINIMUM WAGEhelp

$8.75

#31 in the US

PERSONAL INCOME PER CAPITAhelp

$48,192

#50 in the US

Wisconsin - Poverty Rate

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10%

#36 in the US

MEDIAN HOUSEHOLD INCOMEhelp

$69,943

#30 in the US

MINIMUM WAGEhelp

$7.25

#50 in the US

PERSONAL INCOME PER CAPITAhelp

$59,064

#27 in the US

Wyoming - Poverty Rate

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9.2%

#47 in the US

MEDIAN HOUSEHOLD INCOMEhelp

$71,052

#27 in the US

MINIMUM WAGEhelp

$7.25

#51 in the US

PERSONAL INCOME PER CAPITAhelp

$66,337

#14 in the US

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0%

#52 in the US

help

$0

#52 in the US