IM-#55 May 14, 2020
Manual vouchers are used by exempt retailers that did not use POS terminals prior to March 21st 2014 and when the EBT system is down due to a planned outage.
NOTE: There can be an exception during disasters or an EBT system failure.
Manual vouchers, which are only available for food stamp transactions, are offline vouchers on which the retailer writes the card number, the cardholder’s name, the store FCS/FNS number, the dollar amount of the sale and authorization number. The household member must sign the voucher.
Retailers must call in manual vouchers to the EBT vendor to obtain an authorization for the amount. This guarantees that the money is available in the participant’s account.
Manual vouchers are also used when the EBT vendor system is down. Since the retailer cannot confirm whether the participant has an available balance, the EBT vendor will guarantee a food stamp purchase of $40.00 per cardholder per retailer in a 24-hour period.
If a participant has a question about a manual voucher, refer the individual to the Help Desk number on the back of the card (1-800-997-7777).