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South Carolina Department of Social Services

V. Susan Alford, State Director  

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Skip Navigation LinksElectronic Benefits Transfer (EBT)

What is EBT?

EBT is the method SC uses to issue Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits. Once SNAP benefits are authorized, they are deposited in the EBT account during the night after approval. SNAP benefits in the EBT account are withdrawn when recipients use their EBT card to purchase USDA eligible food items.

When are my SNAP benefits available?

For approved SNAP applications – benefits are deposited the night after DSS authorizes the case approval. Go to to set up an alert to let you know when continuing benefits are available.

For ongoing SNAP cases – benefits are deposited on the same day of the month between the 1st and 19th. Go to to set up an alert to let you know when benefits are available.

How do I get an EBT card?

An EBT card or replacement card is mailed to the recipient at the mailing address provided. An EBT card mailed to an address not recognized by the United States Postal Service as being the address of the recipient will be returned to the card production facility.

How do I use my EBT card?

At the store checkout, swipe your EBT card through the Point-of-Sale (POS) machine, choose EBT and enter your PIN. Your receipt will show you the amount of your purchase and what is left in your EBT account. To keep your EBT card working, here’s some special reminders:

  • Keep your EBT card safe and clean
  • Do not bend or twist the card
  • Keep the black magnetic stripe on the back of the card clean and free from scratches
  • Keep your card away from magnets (like handbag clasps, TVs, etc.) and other credit or debit cards
  • Keep your card out of direct sunlight

What is a PIN and how do I get one?

A PIN is your Personal Identification Number. Call 1-800-554-5268 to select the PIN. You must have a PIN before shopping.

Special reminders about PINs:

  • Choose numbers that are easy for YOU to remember, but hard for someone else to figure out;
  • Do NOT write your PIN on your EBT card;
  • Do NOT keep your PIN in your wallet or purse;
  • The PIN allows you to control who uses your SNAP benefits. NEVER tell the store clerk your PIN. You are responsible to keep your card and PIN secure.
  • If you give your card and PIN to someone else to shop for you, you are still responsible for any purchases or other transactions that person does. If someone else knows your card number and PIN, that person can use all your SNAP benefits. SNAP benefits are NOT replaced if someone uses your SNAP benefits.
  • If you use the wrong PIN four times in a row, your card is “locked” for the rest of the day.

EBT Customer Service Contacts

Direct access to your EBT account:

  • Use the website to see your balance, check your transactions or other EBT banking needs

Call 1-800-554-5268 if:

  • your card is lost, damaged or stolen
  • you have forgotten or lost your PIN
  • you need to change your PIN
  • you need to know the balance on your account

You will need your EBT card number, your social security number and your date of birth when you call 1-800-554-5268. You will also need your PIN if you already have an active EBT card.

What can I buy with my EBT card?

Households CAN use SNAP benefits to buy:

  • Foods for the household to eat, such as:
  • breads and cereals;
  • fruits and vegetables;
  • meats, fish and poultry; and
  • dairy products.
  • Seeds and plants which produce food for the household to eat.

Households CANNOT use SNAP benefits to buy:

  • Beer, wine, liquor, cigarettes or tobacco
  • Any nonfood items, such as:
  • pet foods
  • soaps, paper products
  • household supplies
  • Vitamins and medicines
  • Food that will be eaten in the store
  • Hot foods

You also CANNOT buy, sell, or trade EBT card for cash, drugs, or firearms.

Violations can result in:

  • Temporary disqualification from the program for 12 or 24 months
  • Permanent disqualification from the program
  • Repayment of benefits

To report SNAP Fraud, call 1-800-616-1309

Where can I use my EBT card?

SNAP Retailer Locator – this website will locate stores near your location that accept EBT.

Nutritional Information

  • Nutritional Information – provides information on healthy receipts, reading food labels, and ways to stretch your food dollars
  • Healthy Bucks – is a program available at EBT participating farmers markets, farmers, and fruit/vegetable specialty store/stands. It allows you to get more fruits and vegetables for your EBT dollars spent.

Nondiscrimination Statement for SNAP

In accordance with Federal civil rights law and U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) civil rights regulations and policies, the USDA, its Agencies, offices, and employees, and institutions participating in or administering USDA programs are prohibited from discriminating based on race, color, national origin, sex, religious creed, disability, age, political beliefs, or reprisal or retaliation for prior civil rights activity in any program or activity conducted or funded by USDA.

Persons with disabilities who require alternative means of communication for program information (e.g. Braille, large print, audiotape, American Sign Language, etc.), should contact the Agency (State or local) where they applied for benefits. Individuals who are deaf, hard of hearing or have speech disabilities may contact USDA through the Federal Relay Service at (800) 877-8339. Additionally, program information may be made available in languages other than English.

To file a program complaint of discrimination, complete the USDA Program Discrimination Complaint Form, (AD-3027), found online at, and at any USDA office, or write a letter addressed to USDA and provide in the letter all of the information requested in the form. To request a copy of the complaint form, call (866) 632-9992. Submit your completed form or letter to USDA by:

(1) mail: U.S. Department of Agriculture
Office of the Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights
1400 Independence Avenue, SW
Washington, D.C. 20250-9410

(2) fax: (202) 690-7442; or

(3) email:

This institution is an equal opportunity provider.

You may also file a complaint of discrimination by contacting DSS. Write DSS Office of Civil Rights, P.O. Box 1520, Columbia, S.C. 29202-1520; or call (800) 311-7220 or (803) 898-8080 or TTY: (800) 311-7219.


  • To Report Child or Adult Abuse and Neglect call your local county office:
  • For information on SNAP benefits, contact DSS CONNECT at 1-800-616-1309 or any local DSS office during normal business hours.
  • To report Vendor/Retailer/DSS Employee Fraud
  • Report State Agency Fraud (Office of the Inspector General)