Pandemic EBT Benefits
If you need this information in another language, call the P-EBT Help Center at 1-833-518-0282 and press #5 to speak to a representative.
Visit dshs.wa.gov/PEBT to learn more!
June 13, 2023 Update
Pandemic Summer P-EBT 2023
- Students qualify for P-EBT benefits if they qualify for Free or Reduced-Price Meals or attend the Early Learning Center (CEP School) at the end of the 22-23 school year.
- There is no application for families to participate if they qualify.
- Benefits will be issued to eligible students on an EBT card sent to their household in the mail. Each eligible student will receive a separate card.
- Existing families will receive a letter informing them of new funds and no new card will be sent. Families can use existing cards.
- New families will receive a letter informing them of new funds and a card will be sent.
- Information will be provided with card on how to decline benefits. Benefits are not transferable and cannot be gifted or donated.
- The Washington State Department of Social and Health Services (DSHS) has a program that gives parents/guardians the option to sign up for P-EBT text notifications. In the meantime, please sign up for text alerts.
- Address change or lost card? Families should contact the P-EBT Call Center at 1-833-518-0282
May 17, 2023 Update
We are continuing to work with USDA's Food and Nutrition Service to receive approval for the Children Under Age 6 and Summer P-EBT benefit plans and timing for 2023. Thank you! In the meantime, please sign up for text alerts.
Expungement Notices are Going Out
April 3, 2023: DSHS has started sending expungement notices by mail and through the P-EBT text program. P-EBT benefits are "expunged" or removed from P-EBT accounts that are not used. To avoid removal of any benefits, you must make at least one purchase within 274 days (about nine months) of your last purchase or deposit date. We cannot replace P-EBT benefits after we remove them but we can remind you before it happens. To get the latest information about your account, sign up for P-EBT text updates.
August 30, 2022 Update
P-EBT Latest News
Aug. 30, 2022: We've started processing and distributing Summer P-EBT benefits for children of all ages and will continue to do so over the next several weeks. If you need to confirm your child's eligibility, please call 833-518-0282.
Aug. 5, 2022: We’ve started processing and distributing P-EBT benefits for Children Under Age 6 and will continue to do so over the next several weeks. Be sure to sign up for text message alerts on the status of your child’s P-EBT by clicking the image above.
Aug. 1, 2022: We anticipated sending benefits for Children Under Age 6 beginning in July but we are delayed. Summer 2022 benefits may also be delayed. We do not have specific dates at this time. We are working on processing P-EBT benefits as quickly as possible. We thank you for your patience.
July 13, 2022:
On July 8, 2022, the USDA Food Nutrition Service approved Washington state to provide P-EBT benefits to children under age 6 as well as summer benefits for children under age 6 and school-aged children.
- Benefits for Children Under Age 6 will start being deposited in late July 2022.
- Benefits for Summer 2022 will start being deposited in August 2022.
Although we received approval for Children Under 6 and Summer P-EBT, we continue working with FNS for an approved plan to implement P-EBT for school-aged children for the 2021-22 school year.
What is the P-EBT program?
Pandemic EBT, or P-EBT, is a program that provides food benefits to children who had limited onsite meals at their school or child care center due to the COVID-19 pandemic. P-EBT benefits have helped Washington families affected by these closures to buy food since the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic in March 2020. FNS approved Washington state to provide P-EBT benefits in the 2019-20 and 2020-21 school years. As the pandemic evolved, so did P-EBT, and its requirements from FNS change with each year. To apply for P-EBT approval, DSHS collaborates with the Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction to build a plan that serves families with benefits. P-EBT has three separate plans, which are as follows:
Eligible children will receive approval letters beginning late July 2022 and newly eligible children will receive a P-EBT card shortly after. Benefits for children who qualified for P-EBT previously will be available on their existing P-EBT cards. This card is to be used in addition to your normal Quest EBT card.
Summer P-EBT will be provided to school age children and children under age 6. For each group, the eligibility will be as follows:
Summer P-EBT for School Children
Students who were registered and enrolled in June 2022 in a Washington school that normally participates in the National School Lunch Program/School Breakfast Program and are eligible for free or reduced-priced meals will receive a one-time, lump-sum Summer P-EBT benefit of $391 ($7.10 daily meal reimbursement rate x 55 summer days). Newly eligible children will receive a new P-EBT card, and children who qualified for P-EBT will automatically be added to their existing P-EBT cards beginning August 2022.
This includes students who graduated in June 2022. If your child doesn’t already receive free or reduced-price meals, contact your local school district to fill out a school meal application. Families must submit and be approved for Free and Reduced-Price Meal Applications by Aug. 31, 2022 to receive P-EBT benefits for the Summer P-EBT.
Summer P-EBT for Children under 6
Children under age 6 who are part of a household active on Basic Food anytime in June, July or August 2022 will receive a one-time, lump-sum Summer P-EBT benefit of $391. Benefits will automatically go onto existing P-EBT cards beginning August 2022. Newly eligible children will be mailed a new P-EBT card.
Families who aren’t active on Basic Food assistance are encouraged to apply for food assistance by completing an application online at Washington Connectionor calling the Customer Service Contact Center at 877-501-2233.Households newly approved for Basic Food will be automatically reviewed for P-EBT eligibility in September 2022.
P-EBT for Children in K-12 Schools
As of July 2022, Washington does not have an approved plan to provide P-EBT benefits for school-aged children in the 2021-22 school year.
Throughout the 2021-22 school year, Washington has worked with FNS to develop an approvable P-EBT plan for school-aged children. We are continuing our efforts and will provide additional information should a school plan be approved in the future.
General P-EBT Information
Each child who qualifies for P-EBT benefits will receive an approval letter along with a designated P-EBT card. Watch the mail for a card that looks like this!
The P-EBT card is separate from and doesn’t replace a food or cash (Quest) EBT card.
How do families apply?
Great news: Families don’t have to apply for the P-EBT Program! If your child is determined eligible they may automatically qualify.
How are P-EBT benefits used?
P-EBT benefits can be used like a debit card to buy food in most grocery stores and farmers markets, or to buy food online at Amazon, Walmart and Safeway/Albertsons as well as the A&J Select Market in Stevenson, Washington. Families can also use their P-EBT to get double the amount of food at participating farmers markets. Learn more at DOH SNAP Market Match.
What if I lost or misplaced my P-EBT card?
If your P-EBT card was lost, stolen or misplaced, call 833-518-0282 to request a replacement.Please Note: Replacement cards will be sent to the last known address on file. If your address has changed, please call the P-EBT Contact Center at 833-518-0282 to review and update your information. Cards may take 7-10 business days to arrive once they are sent and will need to be activated.
Should I keep my child’s P-EBT card after funds are used?
Yes! Additional benefits may be issued to the card for as long as the COVID-19 public health emergency continues and we receive federal approval to extend the program.
Who do I call for information?
For information on who to contact with questions on P-EBT, please review the table below. This information is also available in a downloadable version that can be printed and shared with families.
Department of Social and Health Services
P-EBT Contact Center
Community Services Division Customer Service Contact Center
Contracted with Accenture Staff
Fidelity National Information System (FIS)
Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction
P-EBT Contact Center is responsible for:
Text message updates make it easier than ever to stay on top of P-EBT benefits. To receive personalized text messages, visit https://www.textpebt.
P-EBT specific cards are issued under the child’s name and account, not the head of household’s name/information.
Client will need the child’s:
For regular Food/SNAP or Cash EBT card information, the client will need:
Mailing address on file with DSHS.
FIS will not replace P-EBT cards.
Families should contact their local school district to fill out a school meal application if their child doesn’t already receive free or reduced-price meals.
Contact your district to:
Note: Free and Reduced-Price Meal Application collection processes vary by district.
Hours of operation: 8 a.m. – 5 p.m., Monday – Friday (except state holidays).
Interview hours: 8 a.m. – 3 p.m.
Please have your Client ID or Social Security number available.
Hours of operation: 8 a.m. – 5 p.m., Monday – Friday (except state holidays).
Hours of operation: Sunday-Saturday, 24 hours a day.
Customers can PIN cards, order replacement cards (when address is correct) and make balance and transaction inquires using the Cardholder Portal (Login) at www.ebtEDGE.com or by using the ebtEDGE Mobile App.
Hours of operation:
See district website for details. Districts may have limited or reduced hours during the summer mont
August 7, 2022 PEBT Update
Thanks to federal COVID-19 relief funding from the U.S. Department of Agriculture, many families in Washington state will start to receive Pandemic EBT (P-EBT) benefits beginning late-July and through the end of the summer. These benefits will help buy groceries while children are home during the summer months. Pandemic EBT (P-EBT) food benefits are available to families with young children who are eligible for Basic Food benefits as well as school-aged children who are eligible for free or reduced-price school meal programs. The Public Charge rule does not apply to P-EBT benefits and will not impact immigration status.
Encourage Families to Sign Up for Up-To-Date Information
We encourage you to share out that families can sign up for text message alerts about the status of their child’s P-EBT by going to textpebt.dshs.wa.gov. All they have to do is fill out a simple verification form to enroll.
Families Can Still Access Summer Meals
P-EBT benefits do not replace any food assistance program already offered, including free summer meals or meals provided in child care centers. Families are encouraged to continue participating in a summer meal program at their local schools and community locations, even if they receive P-EBT benefits.
P-EBT benefits can be used to shop at any grocery store, farmers market, or food retailer certified to accept SNAP/EBT.
P-EBT Plan Information
The Children Under 6 and Summer 2022 P-EBT programs will be available as follows:
- P-EBT Children Under 6 program: Qualifying children under age 6 who live in a household that receives Basic Food benefits (the federal Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program or Washington state’s Food Assistance Program) may receive $43 for each month they received Basic Food assistance from September 2021 – June 2022.
- Summer 2022 P-EBT program: Qualifying children under age 6 as well as school-aged children will receive a one-time lump sum of $391 per child to cover the summer period through July and August 2022. School-aged children enrolled in Washington state schools that operate the NSLP who are eligible for free or reduced-price school meals are eligible for Summer 2022 P-EBT benefits. Children under 6 will receive benefits under this plan as long as they receive Basic Food assistance during July and August.
- These benefits are separate from a P-EBT 2021-2022 School Year program, which has not been approved by USDA at this time.
To ensure children who may be newly eligible receive P-EBT benefits, schools should encourage families to complete the free and reduced-price meal program application by August 31, 2022. Families should contact their district for meal application information.
P-EBT Contact Center
For full details and additional questions about P-EBT benefits, families can visit dshs.wa.gov/PEBT or call the P-EBT Contact Center at 833-518-0282 between 8 am and 5 pm PT, Monday-Friday (except observed holidays).
July 1, 2022 PEBT Update
Summer EBT 3.00
Student data for Summer EBT 3.0 and benefits are tentatively scheduled to be issued to families in late August.
Here is what we know:
- No new PEBT card will be issued to existing families, but they will receive a letter
- New families will receive a letter and a PEBT card
- If a family has an address change or lost a card, families should contact the call center at 1-883-518-0282
June 23, 2021 PEBT Update:
We have been told to have families contact the P-EBT Help Center, after June 23rd for any ongoing questions or demographic changes. Customers can change their address over the phone and request subsequent cards to be re-issued. P-EBT Contact Center at 833-518-0282.
April 27, 2021 PEBT Update:
P-EBT Cards Information - Card Mailing and Benefits
- Some families are still waiting to receive their P-EBT notificaiton and letters P-EBT cards in the mail and we appreciate your continued patience while DSHS works to mail letters and cards to 500,000 eligible children in Washington state.
- The first round of P-EBT benefits loaded on to a students card, represents September thourgh January
- The second round of P-EBT benefits loaded on to a students card, respresents February and March
- The second round of P-EBT benefits will be loaded to eligible on children’s cards on April 20, 2021
- If you did not receive a card for the first round, you should expect to receive a card in May with the benefits on it.
- Keep your student(s) cards, more benefits will be loaded on to it this spring/summer.
What haven't I received the P-EBT card yet? There has been huge delays in mailing out the P-EBT Cards. The P-EBT card vendor will mail the last batch of P-EBT cards on April 27, 2021, and cards take seven to 10 days to arrive in the mail.
Should I be concerned if I received 1 or 2 notificaiton letters, but not a P-EBT card? No. Please be patient, your card is coming. It is a good sign you recieved the letter(s), the distribution center mailing the cards has had many delays.
How much should I expect on the student(s) PEBT card? Benefit amounts are dependent on the majority learning model of each child’s school. Every 2 months aditional funds will be loaded on your card.
Our tentative P-EBT eligibility notices and benefit schedule is as follows:
September 2020 to January 2021
February and March 2021
April and May 2021
Stay Up To Date
To stay up to date about P-EBT, we recommend to follow the Washington State DSHS Facebook page for additional updates and answers to questions.
For additional information, please refer to the FAQ on dshs.wa.gov/PEBT or call the P-EBT Contact Center at 833-518-0282.
What are Pandemic EBT or P-EBT benefits?
Due to COVID-19, children who are eligible for free or reduced-price school meals will get extra food benefits. These food benefits are called P-EBT. P-EBT benefits help Washington families buy food when schools are closed or have reduced in-person attendance.
Who is eligible?
Children are eligible for P-EBT benefits if:
- Their school is closed or has reduced in-person attendance hours.
- They are eligible for free or reduced-price school meals.
How do families apply?
Great news: Families don’t have to apply for the P-EBT Program! If your child is eligible for free or reduced-price school meals, they may automatically qualify. Families should ensure their current mailing address is on file with the child’s school and are encouraged to fill out a school meal application if their child doesn’t get free or reduced-price meals already.
How do I find out if my child is eligible for P-EBT benefits?
Eligible children will receive a notice and a P-EBT card with their name on it. We anticipate the notice to be sent to eligible children beginning late March. The P-EBT card will be mailed shortly after. Families should keep their cards as more benefits may be added later if their school continues to be closed or have reduced hours.
What if I apply and my student is approved for Free or Reduced Meals later in the school year?
Students will receive P-EBT benefits based on their child's school benefit each month even if a student is approved later in the school year. If eligible through their school, the benefits will be allocated for each month of the school year (September to June).
How much will families get?
Benefit amounts vary depending on the learning model of their child’s school for each given month. The monthly benefit amount will range from $25 to $123.
What does the P-EBT card look like?
Watch the mail for a card that looks like this. The P-EBT card is separate from and doesn’t replace a food or cash (Quest) EBT card.
When will P-EBT cards arrive?
Eligible children should expect to receive a notice a week or 2 before a card is mailed or your current card is uploaded with new funds. The P-EBT card will be mailed separately from letters.
What happens to the P-EBT card if my address changed, we moved or it is undeliverable?
The return address for P-EBT cards will be the address for the EBT vendor, FIS: P.O. Box 290, Milwaukee, WI 53201-0290. If your address has changed from what we have on file, please call your child's school and have the main office update the system with the correct address. You can always call the Nutrition Office at 425-335.1561 and we can try the address the card was mailed to and assist you with any questions.
How are P-EBT benefits used?
P-EBT benefits can be used like a debit card to buy food in most grocery stores and farmers markets, or to buy food online at Amazon or Walmart.
Will families get a new P-EBT card each month?
No. Families should keep each child’s P-EBT card. The first issuance will include benefits for the beginning of the 2020-21 school year through January 2021. Additional benefits may be issued to the card every two months through the end of the school year for as long as the COVID-19 public health emergency continues.
What if I don't receive a card?
The first round of notification and benefit cards will be mailed out the end of April 2021. If you do not receive a card by May 15th, you can call the our Nutrition Office and we can try and assist you.
What if I lose my card and need a replacement?
You can contact the P-EBT Help Center to request a new card. P-EBT Help Center at 1-833-518-0282.
Will I need to activate the card?
Yes, each card is activated by the parent/guardian. Please follow the instructions inclosed with your card to activate before using and to create a pin# code.
My child still gets lunches at school, can I still qualify for P-EBT?
Yes. P-EBT benefits are additional food benefits. Children may continue to receive grab-and-go meals at school or community sites or emergency food at COVID-19 emergency feeding sites offered at community locations, even if they are receiving P-EBT benefits.
My child is homeschooled; do they qualify for P-EBT?
No. P-EBT is available only to children enrolled in and receiving education services in a school, and would normally receive free or reduced-price school meals through the NSLP or SBP if the school wasn’t closed or had reduced attendance.
I already receive food assitance; do I automatically qualifty for P-EBT?
Most children active on food assistance are automatically certified for free school meals, but they don’t automatically qualify for P-EBT benefits. P-EBT eligibility will depend on the school the child attends and their learning model. See question 22 for more information.
How is this different from last year?
The school year 2019-20 P-EBT program originally provided food benefits to eligible school aged children for the months of March, April, May and June 2020. Households applied for these benefits and if determined eligible, they received a standard benefit amount issued by lump sum on a (Quest) EBT card.
Washington State has received federal approval to issue P-EBT benefits for children in school for school year 2020-21 from September 2020 to June 2021. We automated the eligibility process to get more households the assistance they need during the COVID-19 public health emergency. This means households do not have to apply for the 2020-21 P-EBT program.
My child is in child care, do we get P-EBT benefits?
To give P-EBT benefits to children in child care from October 2020 to September 2021, states must develop and submit a separate P-EBT plan for federal approval. The Department of Social and Health Services is currently developing the plan to provide benefits to children in child care.
Are there any other food benefits available right now?
- The OSPI Organizations Providing Meals Map can help families find locations serving meals to children. Participating in these meal services does not prevent eligible children from getting P-EBT benefits.
- Contact your local school district to learn about free meal site locations in your area. These meal programs are available to all children 18 and under, regardless of what school they attend.
- You can go to washingtonconnection.org to see if you qualify to get Basic Food benefits.
- If you have any younger children, you may also qualify for the Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) program, which provides food assistance to children up to the age of 5 and pregnant and breastfeeding mothers: https://www.doh.wa.gov/
Who do I call if I have questions about P-EBT benefits?
All P-EBT eligibility questions may be directed to the P-EBT Contact Center at 833-518-0282.
Families can periodically check www.dshs.wa.gov/pebt for updated information and visit this page often for any updates.
Families are encouraged to participate in Grab-n-Go Curbside Meal Kit School Meals even if they have P-EBT benefits.
Visit dshs.wa.gov/PEBT to learn more!
If you need this information in another language, call the P-EBT Help Center at 1-833-518-0282 and Press #5 to speak to a representative.
Lake Stevens Food Services: Please call our Nutrition Office at 425-335-1561 or Email: email@example.com
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