[nfbmi-talk] {Disarmed} Fw: Important News from Treasury's Go Direct Campaign

Larry Posont president.nfb.mi at gmail.com
Tue Dec 21 14:42:46 UTC 2010

Go Direct
----- Original Message ----- 
From: Go Direct 
To: President.nfb.mi at gmail.com 
Sent: Tuesday, December 21, 2010 9:35 AM
Subject: Important News from Treasury's Go Direct Campaign

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           DECEMBER 2010     
         Dear Go Direct® Partners,

      The Go Direct campaign has important news to share - the U.S. Department of the Treasury today announced that all federal benefit and non-tax payments will soon be paid electronically.

      What's happening?
      Eight in 10 federal benefit recipients already use direct deposit - the safe, reliable way to get a benefit payment. With today's announcement, a new requirement goes into effect that will phase out millions of paper checks over the next 2-1/2 years. 

        a.. People applying for benefits on or after May 1, 2011, will need to choose an electronic payment method at the time they apply for the benefit. Individuals can choose to receive their payments by direct deposit to the bank or credit union account of their choice or to a Direct Express® Debit MasterCard® card account. Those who do not choose an electronic payment option will receive their benefit payments via the Direct Express®card, so they will not experience any interruption in payment.  
        a.. People currently receiving paper checks will need to switch by March 1, 2013, to an electronic payment method including direct deposit or the Direct Express® card. People who do not make the switch by this date will receive their benefit payments via the Direct Express®card, so they will not experience any interruption in payment. 
      What does this mean for the Go Direct campaign?
      Go Direct campaign partners are more important than ever! The Treasury Department is committed to ensuring that Americans are informed about the new requirement and clearly understand what it means for them. With today's announcement, Go Direct campaign materials, media, check inserts, public service announcements and a newly redesigned website, www.GoDirect.org will include information about the new requirement. The Go Direct website and toll-free number will continue to offer a fast, free, safe way for people receiving federal benefits by check to switch to direct deposit or the Direct Express® card.

      Vital to this communication effort are partnerships with organizations such as yours. When you and your staff, volunteers or members talk about the benefits of electronic payments, beneficiaries listen! 

      How can partners help?
      Partners have contributed mightily to the remarkable success of the Go Direct campaign. The Treasury Department needs your help to make sure the people you serve know about this new requirement. As always, the Go Direct campaign makes it easy for partners to spread the word:

        a.. Free materials will help you communicate the new requirement to your staff and the people you serve. Find fliers and posters, newsletter copy, web banners, brief tips, PowerPoint slides, talking points and more at www.GoDirect.org. 
        b.. The Treasury Department through the Go Direct campaign will continue to keep you informed about this important change to the way federal benefit payments will be delivered. Be on the look out for more details.
      Why is the U.S. Department of the Treasury moving to electronic benefit payments? 
      There are many advantages to electronic payments, not only for people who receive federal benefits, but for American taxpayers as well.

        a.. Safer, Easier - Electronic payments provide a safer, more convenient and cost-effective way for people to get their federal benefits than paper checks. In 2010, an estimated $93 million in checks issued by the Treasury Department - including Social Security and other federal benefit payments - were fraudulently endorsed. 
        b.. More Convenient - When people get payments electronically, they don't need to visit a 
        financial institution to cash or deposit a check to gain access to their money. This is 
        particularly important to people who are aging or disabled, or who lack access to 
        c.. Taxpayer Savings - With 78 million baby boomers set to retire in the next 20 years, 
        replacing all checks with direct deposit could save taxpayers more than $120 million annually. 
        d.. Better for the Environment - Eliminating paper checks will provide positive benefits to the environment. For example, 12 million pounds of paper will be saved in the first five years alone. 
      To date, the Go Direct campaign has helped more than 5 million people switch from paper federal benefit checks to direct deposit, and the Direct Express® card has more than 1.5 million enrollments, thanks in large part to our amazing partners. We ask for your continued support in spreading the word to federal benefit recipients about the new requirement so they will take action before the deadline. For more details, please visit www.GoDirect.org or call your campaign representative.


      Walt Henderson
      Director, Go Direct Public Education Campaign

      P.S. Have questions about the announcement? See the FAQ at www.GoDirect.org for answers!

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      Go Direct Processing Center
      Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas
      2200 N. Pearl St.
      Dallas, TX 75201-2272 

      The Go Direct® campaign is sponsored by the U.S. Department of the Treasury and the Federal Reserve Banks. The Direct Express® logo, Go Direct® and Direct Express® are registered service marks, and the Go Directsm logo is a service mark, of the U.S. Department of the Treasury, Financial Management Service (used with permission). The Direct Express® Debit MasterCard® card is issued by Comerica Bank, pursuant to a license by MasterCard International Incorporated. MasterCard® and the MasterCard® Brand Mark are registered trademarks of MasterCard International Incorporated.        


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