MOBILE, Ala. (WALA) – FOX10 News is committed to getting the facts about how the government’s response to the coronavirus affects regular people.
Here is investigative reporter Brendan Kirby with Wednesday’s installment:
QUESTION: Some of our viewers want to know if they will get their stimulus payments on prepaid cards.
BRENDAN: The Internal Revenue Service says it is sending 4 million stimulus payments this week by prepared debit cards instead of paper checks. These are called Economic Impact Payment Cards.
Those cards can be used to make purchases or get cash from ATMs in the network. People can also transfer funds to their personal bank accounts without incurring fees. Also available without fees is the option of checking balances online, by phone or mobile app.
The Treasury Department is getting close to reaching everyone entitled to a stimulus payment. The agency says 140 million payments totaling $239 billion have been delivered by direct deposit, check or Direct Express cards. The EIP card adds a fourth option.
QUESTION: Can people ask for these debit cards?
BRENDAN: They canmot. At least, not at this time. If you don’t receive your stimulus payment by direct deposit, you will receive the payment by paper check, and, in some cases, by debit card.
The determination of which taxpayers get an EIP card will be made by the Bureau of the Fiscal Service, which is another part of the Treasury Department that works with the IRS.
The agency has not provided a lot of information other than that about how it decides. So, if you have no direct deposit, keep checking your mailbox. You might find one of these EIP cards or an old-fashioned check.
For more information about those cards, you can go to EIPcard.com.
And remember, the mail will be sent to the most recent address the IRS has on file. So if you recently moved, make sure you fill out a change-of-address form at the post office.
(If you have a #COVIDINFO question for investigative reporter Brendan Kirby, email him at Brendan.Kirby@fox10tv.com)