Cirque Meadows by Adam Johnson

Electronic Benefit Transfer

Colorado EBT (Electronic Benefit Transfer) and the Colorado Quest Card. The safe, convenient and easy way for you to use your benefits.

Federal welfare reform legislation (The Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Act), enacted in 1996, required all states to change from paper food stamp coupons to electronic benefits transfer (EBT) October 1, 2002. An EBT card functions similarly to a debit card for redeeming food assistance benefits and cash benefits (if you qualify).

Once eligibility is determined, benefit information is sent to JP Morgan to establish and maintain accounts for Colorado food assistance-eligible households.

An EBT card, like a debit card, is "swiped" through a counter-top terminal or Point Of Sale (POS) device at the checkout counter. A client enters their personal identification number (PIN) to verify their identity. This accesses the client's food assistance account and deducts the purchase amount from their account. Security is ensured by an electronic signature, the unique PIN assigned to each card.

Each day all food assistance purchases are totaled and funds are deposited electronically into the bank accounts of the food retailers.

The EBT system provides many advantages to food assistance clients, food retailers, banks, and the general public. Some of these include:

  • Food assistance clients experience increased security and reduced stigma.
  • Food retailers no longer need to count, bundle, secure and transport redeemed food stamp coupons.
  • Food retailers no longer need to keep extra food stamp coupons as change nor return coin change.
  • Banks no longer need to receive, store, account for and ship coupons to the Federal Reserve.
  • EBT increases the efficiency of state and federal government workers by decreasing the time spent issuing food stamps.
  • EBT makes food stamp fraud easier to trace.
  • Monthly food stamp benefits are available by 8 AM (Mountain Time) on one of the first ten (10) calendar days of the month (regardless of weekends and holidays).
  • Monthly cash benefits are available by 8 AM (Mountain Time) on one of the first three (3) calendar days of the month (regardless of weekends and holidays).
If your Social Security
number ends in
You will receive your Food
Stamp benefits on the
1 1st day of the month
2 2nd day of the month
3 3rd day of the month
4 4th day of the month
5 5th day of the month
6 6th day of the month
7 7th day of the month
8 8th day of the month
9 9th day of the month
0 10th day of the month
Background Image: Cirque Meadows by Adam Johnson. All rights reserved.