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tax refunds on debit cards for people without bank accounts, thoughts?

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – The U.S. Treasury said on Thursday it is launching a pilot program to deliver income tax refunds on debit cards for low- and moderate-income people who do not have traditional bank accounts.

The Visa prepaid debit cards are designed to allow these taxpayers to receive their refunds much faster than with a paper check and avoid high fees for cashing those checks at currency exchanges or payday loan stores.

"This pilot program will provide low- and moderate-income Americans with a low-cost option for faster delivery of their federal tax refund," said Deputy Treasury Secretary Neal Wolin.

The card can be used in everyday financial transactions, such as receiving wages by direct deposit, withdrawing cash, making purchases, paying bills and building up savings.

Answer Question

Asked by sweet-a-kins at 10:32 AM on Jan. 13, 2011 in Politics & Current Events

Level 34 (67,502 Credits)
Answers (41)
  • sweet-a-kins

    Comment by sweet-a-kins (original poster) at 10:32 AM on Jan. 13, 2011

  • Sounds like a good idea. Hopefully it works out and they do not have a lot of card fees for usage.

    Answer by Noosa at 10:35 AM on Jan. 13, 2011

  • Good for them!!!

    I thought that applys for anyone who is getting a refund.


    Answer by KFree907 at 10:35 AM on Jan. 13, 2011

  • I did not go to the link so I do not have the entire story.

    Answer by Noosa at 10:36 AM on Jan. 13, 2011

  • I'm all for it. Maybe it will steer them away from those rapid refund rip offs.

    Answer by Astraea_79 at 10:36 AM on Jan. 13, 2011

  • Many low income people are still going to go the route of having someone file their taxes and getting a next day "loan" at exorbitant rates, wasting in some cases, almost seven to eight hundred dollars, because they are desperate for the money. Not realizing that if they just open a bank account and use turbo tax, they could have their money for free in a little over a week.

    Answer by lovinangels at 10:37 AM on Jan. 13, 2011

  • Just remembered:

    Yes, there are fees when taking money out, I was offered that last year, I have a bank card but it does save you money when doing your taxes.

    I never took the offer up, I would rather pay more and just use direct deposit, some people I am sure can benifit from it...

    Answer by KFree907 at 10:37 AM on Jan. 13, 2011

  • It sounds like a good idea, but I wonder how much Visa plans on charging for the card? I know the article says that they'll allow free withdrawals, but somehow I doubt they are going to miss an chance to make money all together.

    Answer by SuperChicken at 10:37 AM on Jan. 13, 2011

  • What I want to know is why there are so many people who don't have bank accounts and how is having the card any different than having a bank account of your own? To me it sounds like the government is setting up accounts for people who won't do it themselves. What's the purpose of that?

    Answer by scout_mom at 10:38 AM on Jan. 13, 2011

  • and building up savings
    where? in their non existant traditional bank accunts. LMAO

    Answer by jewjewbee at 10:38 AM on Jan. 13, 2011

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