- Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF)
States that include TANF in the Combined State Plan must outline how the State will meet the requirements of section 402 of the Social Security Act including how it will:
(OMB Control Number: 0970-0145)
h. Ensure that recipients of assistance provided under the State program funded under this part have the ability to use or withdraw assistance with minimal fees or charges, including an opportunity to access assistance with no fee or charges, and are provided information on applicable fees and surcharges that apply to electronic fund transactions involving the assistance, and that such information is made publicly available (section 402(a)(1)(A)(viii) of the Social Security Act)
Benefit Access and Fee Information Benefit Access—Recipients can access FA benefits at any ATM or POS device at any location with such a device other than the prohibited locations. EBT cards are not accepted in state owned liquor stores known as Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC) stores. To ameliorate an identified situation of unauthorized EBT transactions, the client will be referred to the Client Help Desk provided by our Contractor who is required to provide Customer Service, toll free via a 1—800 number for benefit access information as well as other account information. As part of the delivery of Customer Service, our Contractor is required to provide information 24/7 about POS/ATM site locations where benefits can be accessed. The Contractor must provide general information to clients regarding stores and ATMs. In order to do this the Contractor maintains a database and tracks retailers providing cash back and ATMs that accept the Alabama EBT cards. The Contractor must ensure that no cash client travel any further than 15 miles to any cash access location (either retailer or ATM). Further, if the Contractor is informed of the fact that there is no location within 15 miles or less to provide cash services they will make an effort with assistance from the Department to look into the businesses that are in the area and see if a location is willing to provide the service. If there are no businesses that can or will do so, then the Contractor would inform the Department of why and provide the closest business that will. According to information from the Department EBT Office, to date there has not been an instance where the “15 miles or less” rule could not be met.
Information about benefit access, lost and stolen cards, customer service, pin numbers, etc. is explained to clients during the application interview and is provided in EBT client materials and on the EBT client website. Other Department materials contain customer service contact information.
Fee Information—The first two cash ATM withdrawals in a month are free. Any subsequent ATM withdrawals in the same month incur a fifty cents ($.50) fee. Recipients can receive cash back when using their EBT cards for purchases and incur no transaction fee. Information regarding fees is provided in EBT client materials and on the EBT client website.