WASHINGTON, DC —  U.S. Treasury and IRS will begin sending nearly 4 million economic impact payments by prepaid debit card, instead of by paper check.

Card recipients can make purchases, get cash from in-network ATMs, and transfer funds to their personal bank account without incurring any fees. They can also check their card balance online, by mobile app or by phone without incurring fees. The card can be used online, at ATMs or at any retail location where Visa is accepted. This free, prepaid card also provides consumer protections available to traditional bank account owners, including protections against fraud, loss and other errors. 

Treasury has already delivered more than 140 million economic impact payments worth $239 billion to Americans by direct deposit to accounts at financial institutions, Direct Express card accounts and by check.

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The cards are being mailed to qualified individuals without bank information on file with the IRS. It will arrive in a plain envelope from “Money Network Cardholder Services.” Each mailing will include instructions on how to activate and use the card.

The card is part of Treasury’s U.S. Debit Card program, which provides prepaid debit card services to federal agencies for the electronic delivery of nonbenefit payments. MetaBank was selected as Treasury’s financial agent for the U.S. Debit Card program in 2016, following a competitive selection process conducted by the Treasury’s Bureau of the Fiscal Service.

To learn more about economic impact payments, click here.

To learn more about the economic impact payment card, click here.