Coronavirus Stimulus Payments Now Arriving on Prepaid Debit Cards

Don’t throw it away by mistake!

Did you recently receive an unmarked envelope in the mail that looked like junk mail or just another credit card offer? Be sure to read and open carefully, because it may actually be your economic impact payment!

The government is now issuing Coronavirus stimulus payments via prepaid debit cards instead of paper checks in the mail, if they were unable to directly deposit the funds into your bank account. These Economic Impact Payment (EIP) Cards are sponsored by the Treasury Department’s Bureau of Fiscal Service, managed by Money Network Financial, LLC and issued by Treasury’s financial agent, MetaBank®, N.A. If you receive an Economic Impact Payment Card, it will arrive in a plain envelope from Money Network Cardholder Services. The VISA name/logo will appear on the front of the card, and the back of the card has the name of the issuing bank, MetaBank®, N.A. These are legitimate prepaid cards and are not a scam, so be careful not to toss them by accident!

I received an EIP Card in the mail – what do I do with it?

  • The first thing you will need to do is activate your card, either on the phone by calling 1-800-240-8100 or online here.
  • Each household will only receive 1 card and it must be activated by the primary cardholder listed on the mailing envelope (and the first name appearing on the actual card).
  • You will need to provide your name, address, and social security number to validate your identity at the time of activation.
  • You will then be asked to create a 4-digit PIN, should you choose to withdrawal cash from the card at a participating ATM.
  • Once this is all set up, you’ll be able to find out how much is on the card and start using it.
  • There is no monthly or inactivity fee associated with the prepaid card. You will not need to pay this money back and will not have to pay taxes on this money.
  • Please note that this is a government issued card, and you will not be able to load money onto the card. Once your balance runs out, the card will not be able to be used further.

How can I check my card balance?

  • Visit https://www.eipcard.com/ and login to your account
  • Call 1-800-240-8100 and use the automated phone system
  • Download the Money Network® Mobile App
  • You may also be able to check the balance by inserting the card at an ATM, but be advised that depending upon the ATM/financial institution – there may be a fee associated with the ATM balance inquiry. The above 3 methods for checking your balance are free.

How can I use my EIP card to get cash without paying any fees?

  • Use one of the in-network Allpoint Surcharge Free ATMs listed on the EIP card website or from within the mobile app ATM locator.
  • Choose the cash back option at participating merchants when used as a debit card.
  • Request a Money Network Check and cash it at select participating check cashing locations listed on the EIP card site locator when you enter your zip code.

Can I transfer the money on my card to my bank account?

Yes. To transfer to a personal bank or credit union account, you will need to provide your routing and account number for your personal account at EIPcard.com.

What should I do if my card gets lost or stolen?

Call 1.800.240.8100 right away to lock your card to prevent anyone else from using it. You can also lock your card online on the EIP card website. If you need a replacement card, there is a $7.50 fee.

For a list of other Frequently Asked Questions associated with EIP prepaid debit cards, click here.

To view the cardholder agreement online, click here.

Article Sources:

https://whnt.com/taking-action/bbb-consumer-alerts/dont-throw-it-away-irs-stimulus-card-payments-arriving-in-unmarked-envelopes/

https://www.consumerfinance.gov/about-us/blog/economic-impact-payment-prepaid-card/?utm_source=newsletter&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=eipcard#balance

Why Haven’t I Received a Coronavirus Stimulus Payment Yet?

Does everyone you talk to seem to have received their stimulus money already, but you’re still waiting for your payment to arrive?

More than half of eligible Americans have already received their Economic Impact Payment, but tens of millions more are still waiting. Here’s when you can expect yours, how to help it arrive quicker, or why you may not be receiving a stimulus payment.

The Schedule for Issuing Payments

The IRS is trying to get stimulus payments out to Americans as quickly as possible, but with approximately 150 million checks that need to be issued – it will take some time.

First, the IRS is working on getting the funds to Americans via direct deposit. Most of the payments being issued to people whose account details are known by the IRS have already been distributed, and the rest are scheduled to be deposited as the information is obtained.

Next, the IRS will send payments for individuals currently receiving federal benefits, such as Social Security checks, retirement or disability benefits, Railroad Retirement benefits, Supplemental Security Income (SSI) or Veterans Affairs (VA) benefits. The stimulus payments will be issued the same way these individuals receive their regular federal benefits – whether by direct deposit, Direct Express, or paper check. The Treasury has promised that all Social Security and Railroad Retirement beneficiaries will receive their benefits earlier in May. SSI and VA beneficiaries should get their payments by mid-May.

On April 24, the IRS began issuing paper checks to Americans who had not provided their banking details. Lower-income Americans were prioritized, and individuals earning an adjusted gross income (AGI) of $10,000 or less should have already received their checks. The IRS will then begin sending out approximately 5 million paper checks each week, scheduling the mailings according to incomes in increasing $10,000 increments. For example, checks for individuals with an AGI that falls between $20,000 and $30,000 were mailed out on May 1. On May 8, the checks for those with incomes between $30,000 and $40,000 will be mailed out. This schedule will continue through September 4th.

How Can My Stimulus Money Get Here Quicker?

The IRS will use your most recently filed taxes to determine where to send your stimulus money and the amount you are eligible to receive. If your most recently filed returns have not yet been processed, or you’ve received your refund by paper check, the government does not have your checking account information and your payment may be delayed.

You can update this information on the track my payment portal on the IRS website. You will need your Social Security Number, the gross income of your most recent tax returns, your bank routing number and your checking account information. Once you’ve shared your account information, your stimulus payment should be scheduled for deposit within the week.

If the IRS already has your account information and you still have not received your stimulus money, or you would prefer to receive your payment by paper check, you can track your payment on the same link. The site is updated once a day.

What if my Information has Changed Since I Filed my Last Tax Return? 

If the checking account used for your most recently filed taxes has since been closed, the payment will bounce back to the IRS, and they will send a paper check to the home address on file from your tax returns.

To update a checking account, use the IRS payment portal to enter your current information.

If you’ve moved since filing taxes, you can choose to update your address information with the IRS, or use another method which may include informing the U.S. Postal Service of a change of address.

What if I Don’t File Taxes?

If you are not required to file taxes and you are eligible for an Economic Impact Payment, you can still receive your check. Just enter your information here.

Why You May Not Qualify for a Check 

The CARES Act does not promise payments for every American. Dependents older than 16, individuals who do not have a Social Security Number and those with an AGI above $99,000, will not be getting a stimulus payment. The threshold is higher for individuals filing as a head of household at $136,500, and up to $198,000 for joint filers.

Watch Out for Stimulus Scams

While the IRS urges people to update their information on the payment portal, it’s important to note that they are not reaching out to individuals. If you receive a phone call, social media post, email or text message asking for your personal financial information, it is a scam. There is also no application fee or processing fee for Economic Impact Payments. If you’re asked to pay one, it’s also a scam. Be diligent and stay financially safe and healthy!

Article Source: CUcontent.com