If you haven’t received your coronavirus stimulus check yet, there’s a chance you’ll get it in the form of a prepaid debit card rather than a check in the mail.
The Treasury Department announced Monday that around 4 million people who do not have their direct deposit information on file with the IRS will receive a prepaid debit card with their stimulus funds on it.
“Prepaid debit cards are secure, easy to use and allow us to deliver Americans their money quickly,” Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin said in a statement. “Recipients can immediately activate and use the cards safely.”
The Economic Impact Payments are worth up to $1,200 for individuals and $2,400 for couples, plus $500 for eligible dependents.
Issued through Treasury’s U.S. Debit Card program, the Economic Impact Payment cards, as Treasury is calling them, are Visa debit cards that can make purchases online and at retailers, transfer funds between bank accounts (like your checking or savings) and get cash from the AllPoint network of ATMs.
MetaBank, Treasury’s banking partner, will mail the cards starting this week. Instructions to activate the card will be included and can also be found online. It will arrive in a plain envelope from “Money Network Cardholder Services.” Be careful: Scammers could be waiting to steal your money.
The IRS also announced Monday that 3,500 telephone representatives will soon be available to help answer questions about the stimulus payments.
Last week, House Democrats passed the HEROES Act, which includes a provision for a second stimulus check. It is unlikely to gain much traction in the Republican-controlled Senate.