Because of school closures from COVID-19, Texas received approval from the U.S. Department of Agriculture to provide more than $1 billion in pandemic food benefits to families with children that have temporarily lost access to free or reduced-price school meals.
Pandemic Electronic Benefit Transfer (P-EBT) provides eligible families with a one-time payment for each child who previously received free or reduced-price meals. P-EBT works the same way Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits do and will help families get the food they need during the current pandemic. P-EBT will be administered by the Texas Health and Human Services Commission, Texas Department of Agriculture and Texas Education Agency.
Eligibility Requirements – (Email from Mr. Connelly 6/3/2020)
This program is intended for families with:
- Children who received SNAP food benefits for March 2020
- Children who are certified for free or reduced-price school meals during the 2019-20 Texas school year
Children who attend a school that offers free meals to all students (Community Eligibility Provision or Provision 2)
- If you do not meet at least one of these criteria, you are not eligible for the benefits described below. Your household may be eligible to receive Pandemic Electronic Benefit Transfer (P-EBT) benefits to buy food. P-EBT is for children 5-18 years old who received SNAP food benefits for the month of March 2020 and children up to 21 years old who are certified for free or reduced-price meals at school in Texas during the 2019-20 school year. Children that attend a school that offers free meals to all students (Community Eligibility Provision or Provision 2) are also eligible. The online application for P-EBT is now open. Please review the criteria to see if you need to apply to receive these benefits. The application link is provided below. Maybe now you are asking - Do I need to apply for P-EBT?
- Families that DID NOT get SNAP benefits for the month of March 2020
- Yes, you will need to apply.
- Fill out an application here: yourtexasbenefits.com/Learn/PEBT
The application is open until June 30, 2020.
- If you do not currently get SNAP benefits and your child is approved for P-EBT, you will be mailed a P-EBT card loaded with benefits.
Families that DID get SNAP benefits for the month of March 2020
You do not need to apply for children ages 5-18. Benefits were loaded onto your existing SNAP card by May 22.
- If you have children under 5 and/or between the ages of 19 and 21, you will need to fill out an application for those children. Fill out an application here: yourtexasbenefits.com/Learn/PEBT
If you get SNAP benefits and your child is approved for P-EBT, we will put funds on your current Lone Star Card.
- P-EBT is a one-time benefit for families issued through an EBT card (like a debit card). Families receive up to $285 per eligible child. You will have one year from the date the benefits were issued to use your P-EBT benefits. P-EBT benefits are non-transferrable. If you need help filling out the P-EBT application, please contact is 833-613-6220. For more information, please visit hhs.texas.gov/PEBT or call is 833-613-6220.