PM 22-01-01-h: Accessing Benefits Electronically

WAG 22-01-01-h.

A customer who is eligible for both cash and SNAP benefits can access both benefits with one card.

new textTANF Restriction

It is illegal to access TANF cash using an Illinois Link card at the following prohibited locations:

  • any liquor store; or
  • any casino, gambling casino, or gaming establishment; or
  • any retail establishment which provides adult-oriented entertainment in which performers disrobe or perform in an unclothed state for entertainment.

See PM 03-14-00 Prohibited Illinois Link Withdrawal (TANF). 

Point of Sale (POS) Terminals

A customer may access SNAP benefits at POS terminals. If a retailer has agreed to provide cash, a customer may also access cash benefits at the retailer's POS terminal. POS terminals are usually found in retail stores, such as grocery stores. There are no charges for withdrawals or inquiries at POS terminals.

Automated Teller Machines (ATMs)

A customer can access only cash benefits at ATMs. ATMs are associated with banks. At ATM machines, customers are allowed:

  • 2 cash withdrawals per calendar month without a transaction fee. For each withdrawal over 2, the Illinois Link system imposes a $1 transaction fee;
  • 2 balance inquiries per calendar month without a transaction fee. For each balance inquiry over 2, the Illinois Link system imposes a 50¢ transaction fee.

NOTE: A bank surcharge is not allowed on any Link transaction in Illinois.

At the time an ATM transaction is requested, the balance in the account must be sufficient to cover:

  • the requested withdrawal amount and the transaction fee (if any); or
  • the surcharge and/or transaction fee (if any) for the balance inquiryor out-of-state transactions.

If the account balance is not sufficient to allow the transaction, the transaction is rejected.

The client may obtain cash or inquire about benefit balance information through a POS terminal without charge. Encourage clients to use the Illinois Link Helpline at 1-800-678-LINK or the Link Card website at to obtain their benefit balance and benefit availability date at no charge.