Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT)
Important EBT Downtime Notice
There will be a period of time on Sunday, September 21, 2014 when your Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT) card will not work for cash or food purchases, or to withdraw cash. This EBT downtime is expected to last from 12:01 a.m. to noon on Sunday, September 21, 2014. You will need to plan your cash and food purchases, and cash withdrawals accordingly. The downtime is necessary while New York State changes EBT vendors. After the conversion, your current EBT card will continue to work, and there is no need to replace your card. There will be no impact on your ability to access your medical benefits.
If you are in need of food assistance during the EBT downtime period, please visit your nearest food pantry or soup kitchen that is usually open on Sundays. If you are in New York City, you may call the NYC Hunger Hotline number (1-866-888-8777) for information on the location and hours of operation of food assistance sites. For information on food assistance sites outside New York City that will be open on Sunday, please call the OTDA hotline number at 1-800-342-3009.
What is EBT?
EBT is the method by which the New York State Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance (OTDA) delivers cash and Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits to New York State's recipient population. Cash and SNAP benefits are deposited into electronic benefit accounts which can be accessed using a Common Benefit Identification Card (CBIC) and Personal Identification Number (PIN). The Card can be used at EBT participating ATM machines and Point of Sale (POS) terminals throughout the state.
New York SNAP recipients may access their EBT cash and SNAP benefits anywhere within the United States at participating EBT locations. Cash benefits may also be accessed at participating ATM and POS locations throughout the country. Search for Cash Access locations near you.
Toll-Free Customer Service Helpline
The toll-free number - 1-888-328-6399 - is available in English and Spanish to recipients 24 hours per day, 7 days per week. Please note this number cannot be reached from a payphone. An automated system will guide you through menu options to help direct your call. Recipients may use the helpline to:
- Check your SNAP or cash account balance information.
- Ask questions or resolve problems with your SNAP or cash account information.
- File a claim if you suspect that a transaction error occurred.
- Ask questions about using benefit cards.
- Report damaged, lost, or stolen cards.
- Change your PIN.
- Reset your EBT account website account ID password.
Cardholder Account Website
Cardholders can now obtain information in English and Spanish about their accounts on the Internet by going to https://ucard.chase.com/. Cardholders need to register the first time they log on to the EBT Account website using your most recent active card number and PIN. The website also allows you to create your own account ID and password after you have logged in for the first time. Once a cardholder signs in with a valid card number and PIN, the following are some of the available functions:
- Communicate with EBT Customer Service via e-mail
- Check your SNAP or cash account balance information
- Ask questions or resolve problems with your SNAP or cash account information
- Ask questions about using benefit cards
- Report damaged, lost, or stolen cards
- Change your PIN
How to Use Your Benefit Card to Get Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) and/or Cash Benefits
Your EBT card and Personal Identification Number (PIN) is used at authorized retail stores with your SNAP or cash benefits. Many retail stores also provide cash back with your purchase. Check with the store for their cash back policy. You simply swipe the card and enter your PIN in the machine at the checkout line. Only you should enter your PIN. Always check and keep your receipts for your EBT purchases.
View the How to Use Your EBT Card Brochure
You can use your EBT card at:
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