In New York, the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) is administered by the Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance. The program issues monthly electronic benefits that can be used to purchase food at authorized stores. Benefit levels are based on household size and income, among other factors. In order to receive food stamp benefits, you have to be eligible. Your SNAP eligibility is based on income levels, which are dependent on your household size. For more information on eligibility, click here. Once you’ve determined you’re eligible, you should apply for food stamp benefits. The easiest way to apply for food stamp benefits is online. You may also elect to apply by mail, fax or in person. You can download an application here and return it to your local Department of Social Services or SNAP office. Once your application is filed, the office will review your information, conduct an interview and determine your eligibility for SNAP benefits.
If you’re approved for food stamp benefits, you will be issued an EBT card. In New York, this is referred to as a Common Benefit Identification Card (CBIC). You can use this EBT card to make purchases on eligible food items. Simply swipe your card at the register and enter your four-digit PIN.
1. How can I check my EBT account balance?
To check your account balance, transaction history and other information, simply log on to their website and enter your account information.
2. Can I get benefits right away?
Depending on your financial situation, you may qualify for expedited SNAP benefits. If you do, you can receive your initial SNAP benefits within five days.
3. Can students get SNAP benefits?
Most able-bodied students ages 18 through 49 who are enrolled at least half-time in college or other institution of higher education are not eligible for SNAP.
4. What is Eat Smart New York?
Eat Smart New York is a nutrition education program that teaches you how to maximize your SNAP benefits to better feed your family with less money. For more information, visit their website.
5. Are there items that I cannot buy with SNAP benefits?
Yes. Federal law prohibits you from buying alcohol, tobacco, household items, vitamins and medicines, pet food and hot foods with food stamp benefits.
Contact: New York Food Stamps.