Kinship Care Subsidy Program
child who resides with a qualified relative other than a parent.
Do I Qualify for KCSP?
A child may meet the eligibility requirements for both the Family Independence Temporary Assistance Program (FITAP) and Kinship Care Subsidy Program (KCSP) but may only receive assistance in one program.
To receive KCSP for a child, the qualified relative must meet all the conditions listed below:
How and Where Do I Apply?
Cash benefits provided to FITAP and/or KCSP recipients through Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT) cards cannot be used at certain types of retailers and establishments. They also cannot be used at any retailer to buy jewelry. Cash benefits from DCFS are intended to be used to meet the basic needs of families. Those basic needs include food, shelter, and clothing. Cash benefits cannot be spent in any EBT transaction or at an Automated Teller Machine (ATM) at any of the following types of establishments: If recipients use their cash benefits for the purchase of one of the ineligible items listed above or at one of the types of establishments listed above, their case will close for the following time periods: If you have questions, please call 1-888-LAHELPU (1-888-524-3578). Updated April 17, 2014
Cash benefits provided to FITAP and/or KCSP recipients through Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT) cards cannot be used at certain types of retailers and establishments. They also cannot be used at any retailer to buy jewelry. Cash benefits from DCFS are intended to be used to meet the basic needs of families. Those basic needs include food, shelter, and clothing.
Cash benefits cannot be spent in any EBT transaction or at an Automated Teller Machine (ATM) at any of the following types of establishments:
If recipients use their cash benefits for the purchase of one of the ineligible items listed above or at one of the types of establishments listed above, their case will close for the following time periods:
If you have questions, please call 1-888-LAHELPU (1-888-524-3578).
Updated April 17, 2014
Applicants must be interviewed and provide proof of statements made on the application regarding eligibility. This proof may include a birth or baptismal record to show the child’s age, a copy of the court-awarded custody or guardianship documents or notarial statement, or other documents needed to establish the child’s relationship to the qualified relative.
What are My Rights?
As an applicant, you have certain rights. You have a right to:
- Receive an application the same day you ask for it.
- Turn in your application the same day you receive it.
- Receive your benefits (or be notified that you are not eligible for the program) within 30 days after you turn in your application.
- Have a fair hearing if you disagree with any action taken on your case.
If you believe that you have been discriminated against because of age, sex, color, race, handicap, religious creed, national origin, or political beliefs, it is your right to file a complaint either through your local Economic Stability parish office or directly to the Economic Stability Division or to the Federal Government. If you wish to file such a complaint, you may secure the complaint form from your local Economic Stability parish office.
How Are My Benefits Issued?
Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) is a method of delivering governmental benefits to recipients electronically. Louisiana uses magnetic stripe card technology. The card, which is referred to as the Louisiana Purchase Card enables recipients to access benefits at ATM’s and Point-of-Sale (POS) machines.
Cash benefits are posted to recipient accounts during the first five days of the month. Recipient benefits are accessible by 5:00 a.m. the morning after they are posted. Benefits are posted on the same date every month regardless of the day of the week. Holidays and weekends do not affect the date of benefit availability.
Benefits are secure and accessible only to persons authorized by the recipient. The Personal Identification Number (PIN) is selected by the recipient and must be correctly entered in order to successfully complete all electronic transactions. As purchases or cash withdrawals are made at grocery store checkout lanes and ATM’s, recipient accounts are debited and the recipient is given a receipt which provides the remaining account balance.
SUMMARY OF EBT TRANSACTION FEESA transaction fee is the amount some retailers charge you each time you access your cash benefits, and these fees are deducted from your available balance. There is never a fee charged to your EBT card to make a purchase or to make a purchase with cash back at a Point-of-Sale (POS) machine in a grocery or retail store; however, retailers may charge their usual and customary check cashing fee if you are withdrawing cash at a POS without a purchase of goods or services. There is a $1.00 fee associated with each cash withdrawal from an ATM.
In addition to the transaction fee of $1.00 for each cash withdrawal which is assessed at all ATMs, a surcharge fee may also be assessed. A surcharge is the amount some ATMs charge you each time you withdraw your cash benefits, and this surcharge is deducted from your available balance. The following list of surcharge-free ATM owners provide you access to your cash benefits without being surcharged by the ATM:
- ASI FEDERAL CREDIT UNION
- BANCORPSOUTH BANK
- WHITNEY BANK
- PROGRESSIVE BANK
- REGIONS BANK
Reporting the Misuse of the ebt card
Prohibition of Unauthorized Use or Purchases Made with the Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) Card:
Recipients of Kinship Care Subsidy Program (KCSP) are prohibited from using their KCSP benefits in any Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) transaction or use the Automated Teller Machine (ATM) at any of the following types of establishments: any liquor store (this does not include grocery stores that sell liquor); any gambling casino or gaming establishment (any place that allows gambling, but does not include a store that sells groceries and is housed in the same building as a casino); any adult bookstores, any adult paraphernalia store, or any sexually oriented business (strip clubs, etc.); any tattoo, piercing, or commercial body art facility; any nail salon; any jewelry store; any amusement ride, amusement attraction, or video arcade (including movie theaters); any bail bonds company; any night club, bar, tavern, or saloon; any cruise ship; any psychic business; or any establishment where persons under age 18 are not permitted.
In addition, KCSP recipients are prohibited from using their EBT card for the purchase of an alcoholic beverage (beer, wine, hard liquor), a tobacco product (cigarettes, etc.), a lottery ticket (including scratch-off tickets), or jewelry at any retailer.
Failure to comply with these prohibitions is considered an Intentional Program Violation (IPV) and the penalty is full case closure. The penalty time periods are:
- 12 months for the first offense,
- 24 months for the second offense, and
- Permanently for the third offense.
Reporting of Misuse of the EBT Card:
The agency will rely on retailers and the public to report the misuse of benefits. Individuals are encouraged to call DCFS' toll-free hotline at 1-888-LAHELP-U (1-888-524-3578) and select option 7 from the main menu or by visiting www.dcfs.la.gov/ReportFraud.
To report a complaint to the Fraud & Recovery Unit, retailers and the public may call the Fraud Hotline at 1 (800) 256-3150, email the complaint to DCFS.Fraud@LA.GOV, fax the complaint at (225) 219-1663 or mail the complaint to: Fraud and Recovery Unit, P.O. Box 91147, Baton Rouge, LA 70821-9147.
KCSP HistoryThe Department of Children & Family Services, Economic Stability Division implemented Louisiana's Kinship Care Subsidy Program (KCSP) on March 1, 2000. This program is funded by Louisiana's Temporary Assistance to Needy Families Block Grant and was implemented as a result of legislation passed during the 1999 Louisiana State Legislature.