Some stimulus payments will be sent in the form of debit cards

IRS to issue coronavirus stimulus payments on prepaid debit card	 	 	 			Getty Images

IRS to issue coronavirus stimulus payments on prepaid debit card Getty Images

Almost four million stimulus payments will be sent to Americans on prepaid debit cards in place of paper checks beginning this week, the U.S. Treasury announced.

"Those who wish to know the status of their Economic Impact Payment are reminded to check Get My Payment regularly; the information is frequently updated as the IRS continues to process the remaining payments for delivery", it said. (Users will incur not fees at ATMs carrying the AllPoint brand; fees for non-AllPoint ATMs still apply.) Those who need to pay bills with checks will be able to request free Money Network checks through the Treasury's financial agent, Metabank.

The prepaid debit cards can be used online, at ATMs or at retail stores that accept Visa.

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The almost four million Americans who will receive these cards are the ones that don't have bank account information on file with the IRS.

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) said it is starting to add 3,500 telephone representatives to answer common questions about the stimulus payments, called Economic Impact Payments, as states open up after the shutdown. "Prepaid debit cards are secure, easy to use, and allow us to deliver Americans their money quickly".

The card works just like any regular debit card and provides consumer protections against fraud and loss.

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According to the statement from the IRS, which is overseen by the Treasury Department, recipients will immediately be able to activate and create a PIN number in order to use their prepaid card by following the instructions mailed with it.

Under the $2 trillion CARES Act that Congress passed in March in response to the economic fallout from the coronavirus pandemic, the IRS and the Treasury have been sending out payments of $1,200 to individual taxpayers, $2,400 to couples, plus an extra $500 for each of their dependent children. The Treasury-sponsored EIP Card is another way to distribute the money efficiently and securely to eligible recipients and their families.

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