The Utah Food Stamp Program: How Long Does the Monthly Money Stay on the Card?

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Your Horizon card helps keep good food on the table.
Your Horizon card helps keep good food on the table. (Image: Jupiterimages/Photos.com/Getty Images)

Food stamp benefits are loaded onto the Electronic Benefit Transfer card, called the "Horizon" card in Utah. Each month, on the same day, a deposit is made in the amount of your benefit allotment. Use the Horizon card at the register, just like you would a debit card, to pay for qualifying food purchases.

Rollover

Most families have to supplement their food stamps with money from their own pockets, according to the Utah Department of Workforce Services. However, if you do have money left over at the end of the month, it simply rolls over to the next month, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture. When you get another deposit, it will be added to the remaining balance on your card.

Benefit Period

You'll continue to get monthly deposits on your Horizon card for as long as your benefit period lasts, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture. If your caseworker approved your application for a six-month period, for example, you'll continue to get deposits on the same day every month for six months, unless your situation changes.

What Day?

What specific day your deposit is made on is based on your last name, according to the Utah Department of Workforce Services. If your last name begins with a letter from "A" to "G," your benefits will be deposited on the fifth of the month. If your last name begins with "H" to "O," your benefits will be deposited on the 11th. If your last name begins with "P" to "Z," your benefits will be deposited on the 15th.

Storage and Expungement

Those who choose to use their food stamps as a sort of savings account for a rainy day might be making a mistake, according to Cornell University. In accordance with federal regulations, if food stamp benefits haven't been used after six months, the state agency has the right to put the benefits in storage, from where the beneficiary can access them only if they request it. If the benefits haven't been used after 12 months, they are expunged, meaning they will be permanently removed.

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