Frequently Asked Questions About Electronic Benefits Transfer

What about Direct Deposit?
Direct Deposit is still available to clients for cash (instead of EBT).
What is the Benefit Availability Day ("stagger day") for CalFresh (CF)?
The CalFresh "stagger day" remains the same as it was previously and is based on the last digit of the case serial number. There are no exemptions from stagger for CalFresh.
  • 1 = 1st day
  • 2 = 2nd day
  • 3 = 3rd day
  • 4 = 4th day
  • 5 = 5th day
  • 6 = 6th day
  • 7 = 7th day
  • 8 = 8th day
  • 9 = 9th day
  • 0 = 10th day
What is the Benefit Availability Day ("stagger day") for Cash?
The Cash "stagger day" is also based on the last digit of the case serial number.
  • 1, 2, 3 = 1st day
  • 4, 5, 6, 7 = 2nd day
  • 8, 9, 0 = 3rd day

Note: There may be exemptions from stagger days for hardships

What Programs are Included in EBT?
The Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT) card replaced CalFresh (formerly known as Food Stamps) coupons and Direct Mail (DM). Cash programs include:
  • CalWORKs
  • General Relief
  • Refugee Cash Assistance
What Programs are NOT Included in EBT?
  • Foster Care
  • Vendor Payments
  • Supportive Payments
  • Diversion Payments
What should Clients know about their CalFresh Benefits under EBT?
  • Under EBT, CalFresh benefits can be used at the same grocers that accept CalFresh now.
  • There is never a charge to use a grocer's Point-of-Sale (POS) terminal for CalFresh.
  • A grocer that accepts the EBT card for Calfresh benefits will display the Quest logo somewhere in the store.
What Type of Customer Service will Clients have Access to?
The EBT vendor provides a 24-hour, toll-free, Customer Service helpline. The helpline provides access to an ARU (Automated Response Unit) and access to a Customer Service Representative. Customers may call the helpline for the following:
  • To obtain account balance(s)
  • To report lost, stolen, or damaged cards
  • To request a new card
  • To change their Personal Identification Numbers (PIN)
What Types of Fees are Associated with an ATM?
Transaction Fees
  • First 4 transactions per month = NO TRANSACTION FEE
  • After 4 transactions per month = $0.85 per transaction
  • Determined by the ATM owner
  • Some ATMs never surcharge
Who can be Exempt from Cash EBT?
  • Remote
  • Out-of-County/State
  • Language
  • Disability
  • Transfer out-of-County
  • Other
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