The Electronic Benefits Transfer, or EBT, card is in use in all 50 states to provide food stamps and other social service assistance to qualifying residents. As of this writing, only 23 states allow you to apply for an EBT card online. California, Indiana and Texas only have some counties participating in an online application process for the EBT card. If you do not live in Arizona, California, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Maryland, Delaware, New Jersey, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Tennessee, Texas, Nebraska, Utah, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin or Michigan, you must apply for an EBT card in person or via mail through your local department of health and humans services office.
Navigate to your state's participating application website. The U.S. Department of Agriculture carries a link on its website containing links to each participating state's EBT application processes page (see Reference).
Register for a free account through the state's website if you are required to do so. Click on the link to begin your application, usually labeled "Start Application," "New Application" or other similar phrases.
Check the box next to "Food Stamps" or type in "Food Stamps" when prompted for the type of social services you are requesting. Governmental offices often use the same basic application to obtain the basic information needed to assess your situation.
Fill in rest of the application. Prepare to answer questions about the members of your household even if you are not related to them and to provide figures indicating your gross monthly income from all income sources.
Review your application to make sure all the information you entered is correct. At this point, if your state requires an original signature to complete the application process, you may be asked to print and sign your application. If so, you may hand deliver, fax or mail the application to your local department of health and human services offices.
Click on the "Submit" or "Submit Application" button to submit your application.
Participate in any follow up face-to-face interviews you are required to attend.
- Prepare to provide original certified copies of documents including birth certificates, legal separation or divorce paperwork, Social Security cards and state-issued identification during a face-to-face interview. Documentation requirements can vary from state to state but are necessary to provide proper identification and verification of your income situation.
- Do not lie on any portion of your application or during your interview processes. In some cases, falsifying governmental applications for social services assistance is a crime punishable by law.
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