Pandemic EBT (P-EBT)

P-EBT text update banner

- P-EBT for the 2022-2023 school year
- History of P-EBT

PEBT card

What is the P-EBT program?

Pandemic EBT or P-EBT is a temporary program that provides additional food benefits (separate from SNAP) 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 buy food since the COVID-19 pandemic. Each school year since March 2020, USDA Food and Nutrition Service approved Washington state to provide P-EBT benefits to eligible children.

Over the last three years, P-EBT has evolved as federal rules for the program changed. To provide P-EBT benefits, each state must submit a plan to USDA for approval. Each year, DSHS worked with the Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction to build a plan that serves families.

P-EBT: 2022-2023 School Year

Great news! USDA approved Washington’s Summer and Children Under 6 P-EBT plans, and we have begun issuing benefits. Since federal rules have changed, the P-EBT Summer and Children Under 6 plans will assist different groups of children separately. Qualifications for each program are listed below. This is the final school year for P-EBT due to the Public Health Emergency expiring May 11, 2023.

Summer P-EBT 2023

Who can receive Summer P-EBT?

  • School-aged children who were actively enrolled in a Washington state school participating in the National School Lunch Program/School Breakfast Program in June 2023 and eligible for free or reduced-price meals. This includes 2023 high school graduates.
  • All students enrolled in schools that participate in the Community Eligibility provision.

Who cannot receive Summer P-EBT?

  • Children under the age of 6 (although these children may qualify for benefits under  Children Under 6 P-EBT).
  • School-aged children enrolled in online academics, home school or private schools if they do not  participate in the NSLP program.
  • School-aged children who left a participating school prior to June 2023.
  • School-aged children not eligible for free or reduced-price meals.

How much am I getting?

  • A one-time, lump sum of $120 in Summer P-EBT benefits for each eligible child.

When will benefits be available?

  • Issuance of Summer P-EBT benefits will begin in July 2023 and continue through Sept. 30, 2023.
  • We estimate over 700,000 school-aged children may be eligible for Summer P-EBT.



P-EBT 2023 for Children under 6

Who can receive P-EBT for Children under age 6?

  • Children under the age of 6 who:
    • Received SNAP/Basic Food benefits between Sept. 1, 2022 and May 11, 2023.
  • Note: Children under age 6 do not need to participate in free or reduced-price school meals, nor do they need to be enrolled in a school or a child care center to qualify for P-EBT.

Who cannot receive P-EBT for Children under age 6?

  • Children over the age of 6, unless they turned 6 between Sept. 1, 2022 and May 11, 2023.
  • Children not receiving SNAP/Basic Food.
  • Children approved for SNAP/Basic Food on or after May 12, 2023.
  • Children in a SNAP/Basic Food household with a zero issuance benefit.

How much am I getting?

  • Eligible children will receive $43.88 for each month they were active on Basic Food between September 2022-April 2023 and a prorated amount of $28.94 for the month of May if they received Basic Food in May 2023.


When will benefits be available?

  • P-EBT benefits for Children Under 6 will be issued beginning June 2023 and continue through September 2023.
  • We estimate over 160,000 children will receive benefits under this plan.

Accessing your P-EBT benefits

  • Newly eligible children will receive a P-EBT card, and those who previously received P-EBT benefits in the past will have new benefits deposited onto their existing P-EBT cards. Families who lost their P-EBT cards can order a replacement by calling the P-EBT Contact Center at 833-518-0282.
    • NOTE: DSHS does not replace P-EBT cards or have access to P-EBT case information.
  • New cards and approval letters will go to the following:
    • For Summer P-EBT, the last known address as reported by the parent to their child’s school.
    • For P-EBT for Children under 6, the last known address as reported by the parent to DSHS.
  •  Use your P-EBT benefits! Any unused P-EBT benefits are removed after 274 days of non-use. All it takes is a single transaction on each child’s card to restart the 274 day count. We cannot replace P-EBT benefits once they are removed.

General P-EBT Information & FAQ

How do families apply?

Families do not have to apply for P-EBT! If your child is determined eligible for Summer P-EBT or P-EBT for Children Under 6, they may automatically qualify. If you did not receive P-EBT, you can call the P-EBT Contact Center to review your eligibility.

How are P-EBT benefits used?


Similar to SNAP, P-EBT can be used to purchase eligible food items such as fruits, vegetables, meat and more. 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 retailers participating in the Online Purchasing Pilot across Washington state. Please see the eligible food items page on the USDA website for a full list. 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 seven to 10 business days to arrive once they are sent and will need to be activated.

How do I set up my P-EBT card PIN?

Once P-EBT cards are mailed out, families may call the EBT vendor, FIS, at 888-328-9271 to set up their PIN. When using the automated system to set up their PIN, they will input the information based on the child’s name that is printed on the P-EBT card. (Example: the card comes in the child’s name – use the child’s DOB and Zip Code). 

Should I keep my child’s P-EBT card after funds are used?

Yes! Your child may be eligible for future programs.

What if I did not receive P-EBT yet? We automatically issue benefits to eligible children and this will take time. If you did not receive P-EBT, but believe you may have qualified, please call the P-EBT Contact Center to review your child's eligibility. Not all children will qualify for P-EBT, and those who qualify may differ from other children. Please see the tables above for this information. 

Do $0 households qualify for P-EBT?

USDA’s rules state that $0 households are not considered participating in the Basic Food program; therefore do not qualify for P-EBT. Encourage the customer to reapply for Basic Food if they believe their circumstances have changed.

Do I need to claim P-EBT benefits on my taxes?

No. P-EBT benefits are not taxable under the Federal Income Tax rules.

Do I need to pay back these benefits?

No. Children who receive P-EBT benefits don’t need to repay them.

Are P-EBT benefits subject to public charge rules?

No. P-EBT benefits are not subject to Public Charge rules.


What happens if I don’t use my benefits?

Benefits are automatically removed after 274 days of non-use and cannot be replaced. We encourage households to use the P-EBT benefits for your family and help boost the local economy. If you receive multiple cards for multiple children, you are also encouraged to make at least one purchase on each card to prevent funds from being expunged (removed) after 274 days of non-use. Benefits are not transferable and cannot be gifted or donated. If you wish to decline the benefits, you may destroy the card or return the card to the address on the back of the card.

Why can’t DSHS access my P-EBT records?

DSHS staff do not have access to P-EBT case information, and cannot replace a lost or stolen P-EBT card since this process is completed outside of DSHS and OSPI by the P-EBT Contact Center.

What if I disagree with a P-EBT decision?

We have developed an escalation process with Accenture through the P-EBT Contact Center to attempt to resolve issues. Please have the individual contact the P-EBT Contact Center and ask to have their P-EBT case reviewed. Most issues are resolved with a case review. If the P-EBT Contact Center is unable to resolve, the customer can request a hearing through the P-EBT call center agent. Do not set a SUPCOM. All escalations must go through the P-EBT Contact Center.

Is there a school plan for the 2022-23 school year?

No, this year Washington was only approved by USDA to provide Summer P-EBT and P-EBT for Children Under 6. In order to operate an approved school plan, it must be accepted and approved by USDA.

Is P-EBT the same as Permanent Summer EBT?

No, Pandemic EBT is not the same as Permanent Summer EBT, which begins in 2024. States have the option to apply for this program with USDA. We are waiting for additional USDA guidance on this program.


Who do I contact for questions?

For information on who to contact with questions on P-EBT, please review the table below. 

P-EBT Contact Center

Department of Social and Health Services

EBT Vendor (FIS-EBT)

School District

 Contracted with Accenture Staff

Community Services Division Customer Service Contact Center

Fidelity National Information System (FIS)

Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction




School District Contact & Directory Website

P-EBT Contact Center is responsible for:

  • Reviewing P-EBT eligibility for children under age 6 and summer issuance.
  • Updating address changes and requesting replacement P-EBT cards.
  • Reviewing notices for eligible P-EBT children and answering questions.
  • Case review and administrative hearing request for P-EBT eligibility.  


Text message updates make it easier than ever to stay on top of P-EBT benefits. To receive personalized text messages, visit to sign up for updates.

  • Apply for, report changes or renew Food and Cash programs (SNAP, ABD/ HEN Referral, TANF/WorkFirst, Refugee Assistance).
  • P-EBT eligibility and information is NOT available through the Customer Service Contact Center.
  • DSHS cannot mail, issue, or replace P-EBT Cards.


  • Activation of P-EBT card (create PIN).
  • Change PIN number.

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:

  • Name.
  • Date of birth.
  • Address on file with the P-EBT Contact Center, including zip code.

For regular Food/SNAP or Cash EBT card information, the client will need:

  • EBT card number.
  • Head of household’s Social Security number.
  • Mailing address on file with DSHS.

FIS will not replace P-EBT cards.

Eligible students must have been enrolled in a participating school in June 2023 to be eligible for Summer P-EBT benefits.


Hours of operation:  8 a.m. – 5 p.m., Monday – Friday (except state holidays). 


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:  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 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.

Additional Resources

What Can SNAP Buy?

State Guidance on Coronavirus P-EBT | USDA Food and Nutrition Service (