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Reimbursement Claims Resources

Important Notice: CACFP Program Moved to CDSS

The Early Childhood Development Act of 2020 (Senate Bill (SB) 98, Chapter 24, Statutes of 2020) authorized the transfer of child care and development programs administered by the California Department of Education to the California Department of Social Services (CDSS) effective July 1, 2021. The content on this page may not be current and involves the Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP) that has moved to CDSS. Visit the CDSS CACFP web page External link opens in new window or tab. or call 1-833-559-2420 for more information.

Nutrition Services Division Management Bulletin
Purpose: Policy, Beneficial Information
To: Child Nutrition Program Sponsors Number: NSD-CNP-02-2013
Attention: Food Program/Service Directors Date: March 2013
Subject: Reimbursement Claims Resources

The California Department of Education (CDE) is providing the following information to assist Child Nutrition Program sponsors in receiving timely claims processing via the Child Nutrition Information and Payment System (CNIPS) for the Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP), the School Nutrition Programs (SNP), and the Summer Food Service Program (SFSP).

The CNIPS is the CDE’s web-based system for administering California’s federal and state nutrition programs. Since its inception in 2008, the CNIPS has significantly streamlined, simplified, and modernized the ways in which nutrition sponsors administer their programs, submit applications, site changes, claims for reimbursement, and other administrative actions.

General Claiming

The right-hand side of the CNIPS login page is routinely updated with important messages and information. Please take time to review this information before logging into the CNIPS to ensure that you are receiving up-to-date information.

All reimbursement claims must be submitted in the CNIPS no later than the 60th day following the claim month. For a complete list of submission deadlines and other important information, please refer to the Reimbursement Instruction Booklet located on your respective program’s web page.

The CDE will schedule reimbursements within 45 days of receipt of your accepted claim in the CNIPS. Due to the weekly processing, scheduling, and U.S. Postal cycles, the CDE cannot guarantee that all districts/agencies will receive payments at the same time each month.

The CNIPS Claims module is locked every Thursday morning for processing, and is re-opened by 2 p.m. Pacific Time on Thursday afternoon.

Weekly Claim Status E-mails

The CDE sends automated courtesy e-mail messages every Tuesday to districts/agencies that have unpaid claims in the CNIPS, using each agency’s designated program contact (per their CNIPS application) as the recipient. If your agency receives one of these messages, please review your claim and take appropriate action in order to resolve the issue. To properly submit a claim, select the checkbox in the certification section and then select Submit For Payment. The CNIPS will notify users with a “pop-up” message by changing the claim to an “Accepted” status.

Please note the following Claim Status Descriptions:
  • Not Eligible—A site has an application for the program year but an application condition is preventing this site from being eligible to claim for the selected month. This might occur because the site is not operating for the selected month or the application is not yet approved. This status appears on the Site Claim List screen only.

  • Incomplete—A claim has been created via the Add Original or Add Revision button but the Save button was never selected. A claim in this status requires action on the part of your agency before it can be accepted.

  • Pending—A claim has been saved but has not been submitted and validated. This status also occurs when the claim was re-saved after a submit attempt. A claim in this status still needs to be certified and submitted by your agency before it can be accepted.

  • Error—A claim has been submitted and has business rule violations. A monthly claim has been submitted and one or more site claim reports are in error. Site level report records that have errors will be in Error status. A claim in this status requires action on the part of your agency before it can be accepted.

  • Validated—“Validated” means the site level report records are error-free. This status appears on the Site Claim List screen only. A claim in this status still needs to be certified and submitted by your agency before it can be accepted.

  • Accepted—The claim has been submitted and is ready to be processed. Claims in this status require no further action on the part of your agency.

  • Processed—The claim has been processed for payment. Claims in this status require no further action on the part of your agency.

If you have recently submitted your district/agency’s claim and see the status as “Accepted” or “Processed,” disregard the courtesy e-mail message that we may have sent you.

Please remember to keep your agency’s contact information current in your CNIPS application (authorized official, claim preparer, program contact, payment address, e-mails, phone numbers, and fax numbers). Also be sure to add “” to your list of approved e-mail domains. 

Weekly reminders and other important messages will be sent to certain district/agency representatives. These representatives vary by program and are identified in each agency’s CNIPS Application.

Late Claim Notices

Pursuant to federal regulations, claims submitted after the 60th day following the end of a claim month are ineligible for reimbursement. On approximately the 50th day after the end of each claim month, the CDE sends automated courtesy e-mail notices to districts/agencies that have not submitted claims via the CNIPS. The CDE sends these notices to the agency representative identified in the CNIPS application. In the event a district/agency’s representative has an invalid e-mail address, the CDE will send this e-mail to an alternate contact. If, after the 60th day following the end of a month, an agency submits a claim that results in a net increase in earnings, the CNIPS will notify the district/agency its claim is late and in error. The error message will contain a link to a Management Bulletin detailing further instructions on how to apply for a One Time Only exception. The CDE can only approve a district/agency’s One Time Only exception request once every 36 months, per program (e.g. CACFP, SFSP, SNP).

Child Nutrition Information and Payment System Web Page

CNIPS Help Desk (login and password assistance)

800-952-5609, option 6 on the main menu

Nutrition Programs Administration (application and program-related questions)

CACFP: 800-952-5609, option 3 on the main menu
SNP: 800-952-5609, option 2 on the main menu
SFSP: 800-952-5609, option 3 on the main menu

The Child Nutrition Fiscal Services Unit can be reached at 916-322-8304.

Child Nutrition Fiscal Services (claim and reimbursement questions)

If a CDE staff member is not available via phone for an extended period, dial “0” to reach an attendant. Most voicemail messages will include instructions for reaching alternate contacts.

Additional nutrition-related information can be found on the CDE Nutrition Web page at

Questions:   Nutrition Services Division | 800-952-5609
Last Reviewed: Wednesday, June 16, 2021
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