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HR professionals can help spread the word
Members may download one copy of our sample forms and templates for your personal use within your organization. Please note that all such forms and policies should be reviewed by your legal counsel for compliance with applicable law, and should be modified to suit your organization’s culture, industry, and practices. Neither members nor non-members may reproduce such samples in any other way (e.g., to republish in a book or use for a commercial purpose) without SHRM’s permission. To request permission for specific items, click on the “reuse permissions” button on the page where you find the item.
The U.S. Treasury Department is requiring that individuals applying for Social Security, veterans benefits or other federal benefits on or after May 1, 2011, will receive electronic payments. Those currently receiving federal benefit checks will need to switch to an electronic payment option by March 1, 2013.
A statement issued by the Treasury Department explained that:
According to the Treasury, having federal benefits paid electronically by direct deposit into the bank or credit union account of one’s choice or into a Direct Express card account is safer, faster and more reliable than receiving paper benefit checks.In 2010, more than 540,000 Treasury-issued checks were reported lost or stolen, and had to be reissued, according to the department.
With direct deposit, the Treasury sends an electronic message to the recipient’s bank or credit union account on the usual payment day with the exact amount of the benefit payment from Social Security, Veterans Affairs or other federal agency. "Recipients don’t have to worry about their money being stolen out of their mailbox and there’s no need to make a trip to cash or deposit a check. Plus, it’s better for the environment and saves taxpayer dollars," according to a Treasury statement.
HR Can Help
HR professionals can use the Treasury's
Go Direct campaign to inform employees—especially those on the verge of retiring—about this change by following these steps:
"SHRM encourages our members to visit the
Partners section of the
Go Direct website, or to call a campaign representative at (952) 346-6055 for more information," said SHRM Chief Global Membership Officer Janet N. Parker, SPHR, GPHR. "HR professionals should get involved by sharing information about this new federal rule and helping to sign people up for direct deposit or the Direct Express card," she advised.
Living with Earnings Limitsfor Government Benefits,
HR Magazine, June 2010
DirectDeposit Can Help Save Money, the Environment, HR News, September 2009
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