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Illinois Enacts Legislation Mandating Monitoring of Stolen SNAP Benefits

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Illinois took legislative action after receiving over 5,000 SNAP benefit theft reports from August 2022 to July 2023. From January 1, 2024, the Illinois Department of Human Services (DHS) will track and combat SNAP benefit theft and card skimming.

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Illinois Strengthens Efforts Against SNAP Fraud with Comprehensive Monitoring and Reporting Law

The new state law requires the DHS to monitor and collect data on SNAP fraud, particularly benefit theft. The agency must also document Link cardholders’ financial losses and how the stolen monies were used.

Representative Sonya Harper (D-Chicago) noted her former SNAP use to underline the personal impact of this measure. She worried about the minimal monthly food allowance for disadvantaged families in food deserts with few healthful options. Benefits lost, especially when not recovered without guilt, make these families’ lives harder.

House Bill 2214 requires the DHS to report to the General Assembly annually. This research will help lawmakers combat SNAP fraud in their districts and the state. The statute allows the DHS to report SNAP fraud cases to local state prosecutors for prosecution, increasing the legal penalties for fraudsters.

READ ALSO: Blue Cross Blue Shield and Springfield Clinic reach agreement

Protection, Tracking, and Legal Measures in Focus

Senator Mattie Hunter (D-Chicago) expressed the feelings of Illinois people who lost SNAP assistance due to identity fraud. The IDHS tracks the frequency of these events to assess the problem’s breadth and develop effective solutions.

In response to Link card theft last year, the Biden administration has earmarked cash for each state. Online state forms allow residents to report stolen SNAP benefits.

This new Illinois law addresses SNAP benefit theft by protecting vulnerable families, improving tracking, and facilitating legal action against fraudsters.

READ ALSO: New Illinois law requires tracking of stolen SNAP benefits

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