EBT card use and abuse

(WWLP) – In an effort to reduce fraud, the state has instituted reforms on how EBT cards can be used. Yet the EBT card system can be complicated. How much do you know about this system designed to help poor families? Take our quiz to find out how much you really know about EBT benefits.

You will also want to watch 22News at 11 p.m. tonight, May 6 for a 22News I-Team follow-up on a story we uncovered last year: some Massachusetts welfare recipients use their EBT cards to get cash from ATMs at establishments like liquor and convenience stores and casinos across the country.  What has the state done to crack down on the misuse of funds?  The 22News I-Team continues to follow the EBT money trail of abuse.

What you can’t buy with cash benefits on your EBT card:

It is illegal for you to use cash benefits to pay for the following purchases or services with your Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) card:

  • Alcoholic beverages
  • Court-ordered fees, fines, bail or bail bonds
  • Firearms and ammunition
  • Gambling
  • Jewelry
  • Lottery tickets
  • Pornographic material or performances
  • Tattoos or body piercings
  • Tobacco products, or
  • Vacation services

Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) Brochure-English (PDF)

Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) Brochure-Spanish (PDF)

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