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How COVID-19 (coronavirus) impacts food stamp (SNAP) benefits and more

(updated February 4, 2021)

The financial impact of COVID-19 has been devastating. To help you during this crisis, states introduced changes to food stamps (SNAP), unemployment, and other benefits.

If you haven’t already, download the Providers app to get information about important changes and track your EBT balance: Download Providers

The latest.

Food stamp (SNAP) benefits.

Food stamps are on the normal schedule.

Emergency allotments: In March and April of this year, USDA granted waivers to states to issue additional SNAP benefits to households not already receiving the maximum allotment for their household size. Most states are issuing emergency allotments for February.

Download Providers to get information about important changes.

*Please note: If you are already receiving the maximum allotment for your household size, you are not currently eligible to receive additional benefits. We will update here when we learn more.

Pandemic EBT (P-EBT).

P-EBT is a benefit for families with children enrolled in free or reduced-price school meal programs and in remote/hybrid learning situations due to COVID-19.

UPDATE (2/4/21) Most states are in the process of developing P-EBT plans. Tap here to learn if your state has been approved to issue P-EBT benefits for the 2020/2021 school year.

If you haven’t already, download the Providers app to get information about important changes and track your EBT balance: Download Providers

Housing

Update (12/28/20): The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Eviction Moratorium was extended through March 31st, 2021.

Take these steps to prevent eviction:

  1. Review the eligibility criteria and FAQ.
  2. Use this tool to generate and email a declaration to your landlord or property manager (Each adult listed on the lease, rental agreement, or housing contract should complete the form).
  3. Connect with a legal aid organization in your state to discuss your specific situation.

Utilities

Call your utility company directly if you’re having trouble paying past due balances. If you’re deciding between paying a bill and buying food or essential items, call first!

Unemployment

States expanded unemployment benefits because of COVID-19. These expanded benefits are for full-time as well as part-time, self-employed, and gig workers. Even if you only had your job briefly, you might still qualify.

The unemployment application and certification processes are difficult to navigate. We’ve put this guide together to help make things a little easier.

Please check your state’s Department of Labor site for details about unemployment benefits.

Unemployment FAQ.

Am I eligible for any of these unemployment benefits?

Use this 2-minute tool to find out. (insert link)

How long after I apply will I receive unemployment benefits?

In some states, it is taking as long as 10 weeks after applying to receive benefits.

What is a weekly or bi-weekly certification?

Depending on your state, you are required to certify your benefits and report any income you have earned since you last certified. Many states have waived the requirement to report your job search details due to COVID-19; however, check the information below to verify for your state.

Do I have to pay taxes on my unemployment income?

Yes, unemployment is taxable income and you may have to pay federal and state taxes on both your unemployment benefits. You can choose to have taxes withheld from your unemployment if you want to avoid paying taxes later.

Will receiving unemployment impact my SNAP benefits?

Your SNAP benefits may be impacted based on the amount of unemployment you receive.

How will I receive my unemployment funds?

Many states give you the option of receiving your unemployment by direct deposit to your financial institution or on an unemployment benefits debit card that is mailed to you.

Additional resources.

Many companies and organizations are stepping up to help people who need it right now. We’re sharing these resources in the Providers app to help you:

  • Find food for your family
  • Find jobs
  • Entertain and educate kids at home
  • Stay healthy, physically and mentally
  • And more, every day.

Download Providers to find the support you need now.


Have questions? Is this information incorrect or out of date? Email help@joinproviders.com and we’ll do our best to get back to you.

Providers is not part of the government and we do not guarantee the accuracy of this information. If you have specific questions about your SNAP case, please contact your caseworker or local human services office.

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