- Department of Transitional Assistance
Media Contact for Massachusetts Department of Transitional Assistance Announces Federally Funded SNAP Benefit Replacements Beginning October 12
Ryan Dekeon, Communications Coordinator
Boston — More individuals and families in Massachusetts will be eligible to receive replacement payments for stolen Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits beginning on Thursday, October 12. These new federally funded replacements will cover benefits stolen through skimming, phishing, or other similar fraudulent electronically based methods occurring from October 1, 2022, through September 30, 2024.
Massachusetts first acted in May 2023 to replace benefits using state dollars for theft that occurred on or before September 30, 2022. These additional federal funds allow benefit replacement for a new extended time period.
If you submitted a claim to replace benefits stolen between April 1, 2022, and September 30, 2022, and have had additional benefits stolen after September 30, 2022, you will need to submit an additional claim for benefits stolen after October 1, 2022.
“This is a significant step towards protecting SNAP clients from fraudulent activities and ensuring that they receive the benefits for which they are eligible,” said Secretary of Health and Human Services Kate Walsh. “These efforts make people experiencing food insecurity whole and give them back the funds taken by bad actors. SNAP is a critical tool for us to combat hunger and support local grocery stores, farmers, and food security for vulnerable families and individuals in the Commonwealth.”
“I am proud of the efforts of our staff to alert and protect clients from scams targeting their benefits,” said Department of Transitional Assistance Commissioner Jeff McCue. “Unfortunately, scammers continue to target benefit recipients, so it’s important that clients monitor their accounts, and take action if they notice something is not right. Reach out to us at DTA – our staff is ready to help, and will support you in taking steps to protect your account and safeguard your benefits.”
To receive replacement benefits, clients must contact DTA and submit a claim. After the claim is verified by DTA staff, the total amount of benefits that were stolen or double the household’s monthly allotment, whichever is the lesser amount, will be placed into client’s accounts.
Instructions on how to request replacement benefits:
To request replacement benefits, clients can contact DTA and provide a self-attestation signature using one of the following methods:
Online: Fill out our online form
Mail: Send printed form to:
DTA Program Integrity
Fraud Investigation Unit
P.O. Box 4411
Taunton, MA 02780-0435
By Phone: DTA Stolen Benefits Line 833-602-9247, or DTA Assistance Line 877-382-2363
More information on reporting stolen benefits can be found on our website.
All DTA clients are encouraged to change their PIN frequently. For additional protection, households can have their cash benefits (TAFDC or EAEDC) sent directly to a checking or savings account through direct deposit. Residents can contact their case manager if they have a bank account and want to set up direct deposit. Households are also reminded to never provide their personal information, EBT card number, or PIN to unidentified callers or in a link provided via text or email. A DTA staff member will never ask for a PIN.
DTA has taken multiple steps to notify clients of scams and ways to protect their benefits. These include: sending text messages and notices to clients, adding an alert on the agency’s mobile app DTA Connect, inserting flyers in regular DTA mailings and providing them in DTA local offices, creating outreach materials for stakeholders and community partners in 11 languages, sending out media advisories, updating messages on the DTA Assistance Line to include this information, creating videos in English, Spanish and American Sign Language (ASL), and creating dedicated webpages. Additionally, Massachusetts was selected as one of five states to partner with the federal government on a mobile EBT pilot program, where clients will eventually be able to use their card more securely on their mobile device, eliminating the risk of skimming.
If any DTA client believes they may have fallen victim to a scam, they are encouraged to report it to DTA’s fraud hotline at 1-800-372-8399.