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DCF COVID-19 Information

Economic Self-Sufficiency

Currently, all Department of Children and Families’ (DCF) Economic Self-Sufficiency (ESS) storefronts and lobbies are closed to the public.

Current and potential clients should visit https://www.myflorida.com/accessflorida/:

  • Apply for the Supplemental Nutrition Program (SNAP), Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF), or Medicaid;
  • Make changes or check the status of your benefits through the Self-Service Portal;
  • Receive case information and answers to benefit questions by talking to DCF’s virtual assistant; and
  • Order an Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) card, get information about EBT transactions, or report an EBT card as lost or stolen.

DCF’s Statewide Customer Call Center is also available for customer questions, benefit interviews, and application assistance at 850-300-4323 (TTY 1-800-955-8771), Monday through Friday, 7 a.m. to 6 p.m.

If you are an individual with a disability and need help with the application process or other ESS services, please find your regional point of contact listed on the following website: https://www.myflfamilies.com/service-programs/individual-with-disability/auxiliary-aids-plan.shtml

Maximum Monthly Allotment
Governor Ron DeSantis directed DCF to coordinate with our federal partners to temporarily increase all Supplemental Nutritional Assistance Program (SNAP) recipients’ benefit amounts to the maximum monthly allotment based on household size for March 2020 through March 2021.

Additionally, in December 2020, President Donald Trump signed the federal Consolidated Appropriations Act, which increased the benefit amounts for SNAP clients each month from January 2021 through June 2021.

Households that normally receive their benefits between March 1st and 10th, will receive their maximum allotment supplement on March 11th. Households that receive their benefits after March 10th, will receive their maximum allotment supplement on their regularly staggered issuance schedule. New households approved for SNAP will have a supplement issued within 2 weeks. The maximum allotments can be viewed in the table below.

  • People in Household Maximum Benefit Amount
    Effective 10/1/2020
    Maximum Benefit Amount
    Effective 1/1/2021 includes 15% increase per the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021

    1

    $204

    $234

    2

    $374

    $430

    3

    $535

    $616

    4

    $680

    $782

    5

    $807

    $929

    6

    $969

    $1,114

    7

    $1,071

    $1,232

    8

    $1,224

    $1,408

    For Each Additional Person

    +$153

    +$176


Recertifications
DCF waived recertifications from April through August 2020. DCF stands ready to assist Florida’s benefit clients if needed through the recertification process, which can be done virtually and through the self-service portal.

Medicaid recipients will remain eligible for the duration of the public health emergency as declared by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

Work Requirements Waiver
Under the leadership of Governor DeSantis, DCF applied good cause and suspended work requirements for the months of March 2020 through February 2021.

  • In Florida, Able Bodied Adults without Dependents (ABAWDs) are individuals who received SNAP, or food assistance, and are subject to the work requirements. ABAWDs must meet monthly work requirements.
  • Recipients of TANF, or cash assistance, must participate in work activities.

Medicaid Eligibility and Applications
Due to the public health emergency, individuals applying for Medicaid may be unable to submit all the documentation required to process their application. As a result, applicants now have 120 days for the date of submission to provide all required documentation to complete their application. If the Medicaid application is approved, the individual’s Medicaid eligibility effective date will still be the first day of the month that the initial application was received.

Medicaid coverage for most individuals will not be reduced or eliminated during the COVID-19 public health emergency.

SNAP Online Purchasing
In coordination with federal, state, and local partners, the online purchasing pilot ensures Floridians can access nutritious food while also practicing social distancing and self-quarantining practices to reduce the spread of COVID-19.

SNAP recipients may purchase groceries online with the use of an EBT card. They are automatically eligible to participate in this program and do not need to apply. As of December 2020, participating retailers include Walmart, Amazon, and ALDI.

For more information on the online purchasing pilot, please refer to the Online Purchasing Pilot FAQs.

Pandemic-EBT or P-EBT
DCF worked with the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services to issue Pandemic Electronic Benefits Transfer (P-EBT) to households with children who had temporarily lost access to free or reduced-price school meals due to pandemic-related school closures from March through June 2020.

Florida issued P-EBT benefits to more than 2.2 million children in the amount of $687,738,431.

For more information on the P-EBT program, please refer to the P-EBT FAQs.

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