watch the thematic videoYour Money, Your Future: Stimulus debit cards may not look like you think
Start using your EIP Card
Now that you’ve received your Economic Impact Payment (EIP) Card, here’s how to activate and start using it.
Visit IRS.gov/EIP for more information on Economic Impact Payments.
Curious about how how to activate money network card online can use your EIP Card, transfer funds, get cash or obtain a replacement EIP Card?
Activate your Card
Use your Card2
Shop anywhere Visa® Debit Cards are accepted: in-store, online or by phone, including paying bills3
Get cash back at the register with PIN debit purchases at participating merchants
Get cash surcharge-free at any in-network ATM - find one with the ATM Locator
Learn more about how and where to use your EIP Card in the Help Center
Get your balance
You can use your EIP Card to make purchases where Visa® Debit is accepted — in stores, online or by phone.
Your purchases are covered by Visa’s Zero Liability Policy4 so you’ll have peace of mind wherever you shop.
The EIP Card makes it easy to access your money for things like groceries, dining out, shopping for home essentials, or paying bills3.
WELCOME TO METABANK'S FRESH, NEW WEBSITE
Important Notice about Economic Impact Payments ("stimulus check"): For information about your EIP Card (also known as "stimulus card"), please call the number on the back of your card, visit EIPcard.com. For other Economic Impact Payment questions, click here.
The features you've come to expect from MetaBank.com are still here.
Take a few minutes to explore our just-released enhancements.
- Stay informed and get connected: Want the latest fraud alerts? New product updates? Invitations to "Chat with the Expert" events? Click "Get Connected" to see our information hub, compiled just for you.
- Simplified card sales: Click the "Cards" icon to buy MetaBank prepaid cards and apply for MetaBank personal how to activate money network card online cards online, day or night.
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This blog was originally posted on May 20, 2020 and was updated on June 1, 2020.
If you recently received an Economic Impact Payment prepaid debit card from the government in the mail, this is money for you under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act.
Do not throw this card away. You will need how to activate money network card online card to access your Economic Impact Payment. You must first activate your card by phone before you can use it. Once activated, your money is safe and secure on the card. Be sure to immediately report if your card is lost or stolen.
Here are some common questions and tips to help you access your money and use your card, including how to do so with limited fees. While most transactions are free, small fees can add up, so know how you can make the most of your money.
I received an Economic Impact Payment VISA prepaid debit card from the government in the mail. Is this a scam?
This is not a scam. The government is sending some people Economic Impact Payment Cards if they qualified for a stimulus payment and the IRS couldn’t direct deposit the payment.
Your Economic Impact Card will come in a plain envelope from “Money Network Cardholder Services” along with important information about the card, instructions for activation, fees, and a note from the U.S. Treasury. The card itself will have the words “VISA” and “DEBIT” on the front and the issuing bank, “MetaBank, N.A.”, on the back and should look like this:
How do I activate my card?
Before you can access your Economic Impact Payment, you will first need to activate your card, either online or by phone. You will receive only one card for your household and the primary cardholder must activate the card.
If you are the primary cardholder:
- Call 1-800-240-8100 (TTY: 1-800-241-9100)
- Provide your how to activate money network card online, address, and social security number to validate your identity
- Create a 4-digit PIN so you can get cash at the ATM. If you forget your PIN, you can call customer service to get a new one
- Check the balance to know how much you received
Once you activate your card, you can start using your card immediately. There is no monthly or inactivity fee and your money does not expire. You do not need to pay this money back and do not have to pay taxes on this money.
How do I check my balance without paying a fee?
There are multiple ways you can check your balance conveniently 24/7 for free, including through push notification, text, or email:
- Online: visit EIPCard.com and access your account information (account registration required)
- By Phone: call 1-800-240-8100 (TTY: 1.800.241.9100) and use the automated voice response system
- Mobile App: download the Money Network® Mobile App (account registration required)
Tip: If you typically check your card balance at the ATM, try to use one of the free ways above to avoid paying a balance inquiry fee.
How do I use my card to get cash without paying a fee?
There are several ways to get cash from your card without paying a fee.
- Use one of the In-Network AllPoint brand ATMs to withdraw cash. Use the ATM locator at EIPCard.com or Money Network® Mobile App to locate one near you. Limits may apply to the amount of cash you are able to withdraw at ATMs.
- Get cash-back at participating merchants, like grocery and convenience stores. If the merchant allows cash-back during a purchase, select “Debit” on the keypad, enter your 4-digit PIN, select “Yes” to get cash-back, and then enter the amount of cash you would like. Check the merchant’s policies on amount limits.
- Request a Money Network Check and cash it at select participating check cashing locations. Go to EIPCard.com to find the nearest participating check cashing locations. To avoid a fee, cash only Money Network Checks and only at participating check cashing locations. Limits may apply.
Tip: If you already have a bank or credit union account that you are comfortable using to access cash for free, you can also transfer money from your card to this personal account and then withdraw cash in the same way you normally would once it is available.
How do I transfer money from my card to a personal account without paying a fee?
To transfer your money (up to $2,500 per transaction) to a personal account without a fee, you will need to log into your account at EIPCard.com to initiate a transfer.
- To transfer to a personal bank or credit union account, you will need to provide your routing and account number for your personal account at EIPcard.com.
- To transfer to an existing personal prepaid card, first check if your personal prepaid card accepts transfers by logging into your account or calling your card provider. If it does, provide the routing and account number for your personal prepaid card at EIPCard.com.
Tip: In many cases, peer-to-peer (P2P) apps—like Venmo or Paypal—will accept your Economic Impact Payment Card as a source of funding. Check with the P2P provider for specific instructions on if you can do this for free.
I would like to pay a bill (such as rent) that doesn’t allow payment with debit cards. How can I do this without paying a fee?
You can pay how to activate money network card online, bills, or other payments from your account using a Money Network Check without paying a fee.
To do this, you need to:
- Request a Money Network Check by calling customer service at 1-800-240-8100
- Check your balance to make sure you have enough funds to cover your payment
- When you receive the check, fill out the date, dollar amount, and name of who you are paying
- Activate your check by calling customer service at 1-800-240-8100 and following the instructions to enter the check number, digit, and amount, and record the issuer number and transaction number provided by the automated phone system
- Once you have successfully activated your check, the payment will be immediately deducted from your account balance and you can send your payment for your rent or other bill
Tip: If you occasionally pay a bill with a money order, consider using a Money Network Check to pay your bill instead to avoid paying a money order fee.
I am not familiar with prepaid debit cards. What is important to know about using this card?
The Economic Impact Payment Card is a VISA prepaid debit card. The government has loaded your Economic Impact Payment onto the card for you. You do not need to pay this money back and you will not be taxed on this money. Once activated, your money is safe on this card and is eligible for FDIC insurance. Be sure to immediately report if your card is lost or stolen.
If you have had a checking account debit how to activate money network card online or credit card before, this card may be a little different. First, this card is not linked to any bank or credit union account and will not have any impact on your credit score or help you build your credit. You cannot overdraft or spend more than what has been loaded on the card. If you don’t have enough money to cover a purchase, the transaction may be how to activate money network card online or partially authorized. If this happens, you may be asked to use another form of payment to pay the full or remaining amount if you want to complete the transaction.
You can get cash, request a check, or make a purchase anywhere VISA debit cards are accepted. Each time you use your card, the amount will be deducted from your balance until you use all your funds. You will not be able to load your own money on this card and your money will not expire. If you do not use all your money before the expiration date printed on the card, you can call customer service to request a refund check for the remaining balance.
Tip: If you use this card to pay for gas, give your card to the attendant to pre-pay for gas rather than paying at the pump to avoid a pre-authorization. A pre-authorization puts a temporarily hold on your money that could be greater than the transaction amount and may take up to 10 business days to be released back to you. Paying the attendant to pre-pay for gas can help you avoid placing a hold on your money so that you have access to your money if you need it.
What do I do if my card is lost, stolen, or misplaced?
If your card is permanently lost, stolen, or accidentally thrown away call customer service at 1.800.240.8100 (TTY: 1.800.241.9100) to report your lost or stolen card immediately. Your card will be deactivated so nobody can use it and you will be able to order a new replacement card. Your first replacement card is free and additional replacement cards are $7.50 (an additional $17.00 if you need it expedited).
If you think you have misplaced your card, go to EIPCard.com and lock your card to prevent unauthorized transactions or ATM withdrawals while you look for it.
Where can I find the fees for optional services?
While most transactions are free, some fees may apply.
Check your cardholder agreement and other important information material that came in the envelope with your card or at EIPCard.com. This will include a full schedule of fees and services as well as more details about your card.
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Second Stimulus Check Payments by Debit Card Are Coming (It's Not Junk Mail!)
You might be one of the approximately 8 million Americans who finds a debit card in their mailbox soon. If so, don't automatically think it's some sort of scam or junk mail. It might be the second stimulus check payment you've been waiting for – just in the form of a prepaid debit card. The cards – called Economic Impact Payment Cards, or EIP Cards, by the IRS – will go to certain people who don't have bank information on file with the tax agency. Instead of mailing a paper check (which takes longer to process), the cards will be sent to the most recent mailing address on file with the IRS for those selected to receive them. EIP Cards are going to eligible recipients across all 50 states and the District of Columbia, but Americans in the western part of the country are generally more likely to get one.
If you do receive an EIP Card, you'll probably have a lot of questions about how it works. How do I use it? Where can I use it? Are there any fees? Can the IRS track my purchases? The cards come with some nice features, but there are also some special rules for their use. So you can hit the ground running if an EIP Card shows up in your mailbox, here are answers to a few important questions you're likely to have about your second stimulus payment debit card. And make sure you put the money to good use! (To find out how much money you will get, use our Second Stimulus Check Calculator.)
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What an EIP Card Looks Like
Question: What will my EIP Card look like?
Answer: Your stimulus payment debit card will come in a white envelope that prominently displays the U.S. Department of the Treasury seal and includes "Economic Impact Payment Card" in the return address. The envelope also states that it contains "important information about the Economic Impact Payment."
The card itself will say "Visa" on the front and "MetaBank" (the issuing bank) on the back.
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Activating the Card
Question: Do I have to activate my EIP Card?
Answer: Yes, you will have to activate your debit card by calling the toll-free activation line at 800-240-8100. You'll have to input your card number, last 6-digits of your Social Security number, and the 3-digit security code from the back of the card. You could also be asked to further validate your identity by providing, at minimum, your name and address or answer identity verification questions. If your card has more than one name on it, only the first person listed (i.e., the primary cardholder) can activate the card.
You'll also be asked to create a 4-digit PIN number.
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Debit Card for First-Round Stimulus Check
Question: If I received a debit card for my first stimulus check, will my second stimulus check payment be deposited on the card I already have?
Answer: If you received an EIP Card for your first stimulus payment, it doesn't mean you'll automatically receive an EIP Card for your second payment. You might receive a paper check this time. Also, if you received a paper check for the first payment, you might get a debit card this time.
If you get a debit card for both payments, a new EIP Cards will be issued for your second-round payment. The first-round EIP Cards won't be "reloaded."
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Volunteering to Get a Debit Card
Question: Can I specifically ask the IRS to send may stimulus payment to me on a debit card?
Answer: No. You can't choose to receive a prepaid debit card. The Bureau of the Fiscal Service, which works with the IRS to handle distribution of the stimulus payments, decides who will receive a debit card.
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Purchases at Brick-and-Mortar Stores
Question: Can I use my EIP Card to make purchases at stores?
Answer: Yes, you can use your stimulus check debit card to make purchases at stores that accept Visa® debit cards. Depending on the store, you can either sign for the transaction or enter your 4-digit PIN.
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Question: Can I use my debit card for online purchases?
Answer: Yes, you can also use your EIP debit card to make online purchases if the seller's website accepts Visa® debit card payments. If asked, make sure you use the correct billing address for your debit card account. To verify or change your billing address, log in to your account at EIPCard.com and click on "My Profile."
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Buying Gas with Your EIP Card
Question: How do I pay for gas with my EIP Card?
Answer: When using your debit card to pay for gas, give your card to the attendant to pre-pay for gas. This will avoid a pre-authorization charge. If you pay for gas at the pump with most debit cards, the gas station will often "pre-authorize" your purchase. This puts a temporary extra charge on your card. It can take up to seven business days to get that money back.
Some other businesses – such as hotels, car rental companies and restaurants – may also impose pre-authorization charges.
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Question: Can I get cash using my EIP Card?
Answer: Yes, there are three ways you can get cash using your stimulus payment debit card.
First, you can withdraw cash from an ATM. There could be a fee if you use an out-of-network ATM. You can find in-network ATMs at EIPCard.com/locator.
Second, you can get cash back from some stores when using your 4-digit PIN to make a purchase. (Select "yes" when asked if you want cash back.)
Third, you can go to a bank or credit union branch to get cash. Make sure you know how much money is on the card, because the bank teller won't be able to check the balance. Also note that bank fees may apply.
Daily cash withdrawal limits may also apply for your EIP Card. ATMs could have their own limits, too.
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Question: Can I make recurring bill payments with my debit card?
Answer: Yes, your EIP Card can be used to make recurring payments. Just make sure you have enough money on the card to cover each payment. If you don't have enough money on the card, the transaction will be fully or partially declined.
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Person-to-Person (P2P) Payments
Question: Can I use my EIP Card with a person-to-person payment app?
Answer: Yes, you can use your EIP Card with PayPal, Venmo and most of the other popular person-to-person payment apps. Ask your preferred app provider for any details or special requirements.
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Question: Are amazon pantry coupon any fees for using my stimulus payment debit card?
Answer: Yes. Many services and types of transactions are free of charge. For instance, there's no monthly fee, lost or stolen card replacement fee, customer service charges, or per purchase cost.
However, a fee is charged for the following EIP Card services and transactions:
- Cash Withdrawal at Bank – $5 for second and subsequent withdrawals (first withdrawal is free; the bank may also charge a fee);
- Domestic Out-of-Network ATM Withdrawals – $2 for second and subsequent withdrawals (first withdrawal is free);
- International ATM Withdrawals – $3; and
- ATM Balance Inquiries – 25¢.
Check your EIP Card welcome packet and cardholder agreement for more information about fees.
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Tracking the Card's Balance
Question: How can I check the balance of my account?
Answer: There are three ways to track your EIP Card account balance and transaction history.
First, you can check your balance and transactions online at EIPCard.com. You have to register first, though. To register, go to EIPCard.com, click on the Login button, and the click on the "Register Now" link. Follow the steps to create a user ID and password (you'll need to have your EIP Card in hand).
You can also keep track of your account information by phone. Call 800-240-8100 to hear your balance and transaction history using the automated system.
Finally, you can download the Money Network Mobile App2 at the App Store® or on Google Play™.
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Extra Cards for Family Members
Question: Can I get more debits cards for my family?
Answer: No, you can't get additional EIP Cards for other members of your family. You only get the one card.
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Question: Will using the debit card help my credit score?
Answer: No. Unlike a credit card, using an EIP Card will not improve your credit score. On the other hand, you won't have to pay interest or build up debt, either.
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Lost or Stolen Cards
Question: What should I do if my card is lost or stolen?
Answer: If your EIP Card is lost or stolen, log in to your account at EIPCard.com immediately and "lock" your card so no one else can use it. You should then call customer service at 800-240-8100 and report the loss or theft of your card right away. For cards with more than one name on it, the primary cardholder (i.e., the person listed first) must make the call. A new card will be sent how to activate money network card online you free of charge.
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Question: Can money on the debit card be transferred to my bank account?
Answer: Yes. Although your EIP Card is not linked to your bank account, you can transfer money from your card to your bank account. This type of transaction is done online at EIPCard.com or through the Money Network Mobile App. You'll how to activate money network card online the routing and account number for your bank account.
To transfer funds:
- Call 800-240-8100 to activate your card;
- Register for online or mobile app access by going to EIPCard.com or the Money Network Mobile App2 and click on "Register" (follow the steps to create your user ID and password, and be sure to have your EIP Card handy); and
- Select Move Money Out and follow the steps to set up your ACH transfer.
Transfers should post to your bank account in 1 to 2 business days.
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Government Access to Information
Question: Can the IRS or other government agency track my EIP Card activity?
Answer: No. Except in rare and limited situations, no government agency, including the IRS, will have access to information about your EIP Card activities.
The government can't take money out of your EIP Card account, either.
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Question: Can I write a check for payments from my EIP Card account?
Answer: Yes. If you have an EIP Card, you can request a Money Network® Check by calling 800-240-8100. The check amount will be subtracted from your debit card account balance. For more information, check the cardholder agreement at EIPCard.com.
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Stay on Top of Stimulus Check Developments
Follow Kiplinger for the latest news and insights on federal stimulus payments (and other important personal-finance matters). Stay with us on:
See some of our other coverage of the second stimulus check:
Four million Americans are receiving their Economic Impact Payment in the form of a prepaid debit card — and many are mistaking it for junk mail.
Last week, the U.S. Treasury Department and the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) began sending out Economic Impact Payments (EIP) as prepaid debit cards. The cards arrive in plain white envelopes that are strikingly similar to junk mail from credit card companies and scam mail. There’s no way to know that the card is from the federal government unless the recipient knows to expect it.
Reports are already pouring in from all over the country of people mistakenly tossing their EIP cards along with their junk mail. By the time they realize they’ve thrown out their long-awaited stimulus payment, it’s too late.
Here’s how to spot your EIP card, activate it and use it, in three easy steps:
Step 1: Spot your card in the mailIf you’re eligible for a stimulus payment and you haven’t yet received it via direct deposit or paper check, be on the lookout for your EIP card in the mail. The prepaid debit card will arrive in a white envelope with a return address from “Money Network Cardholder Services” of MetaBank in Omaha, Nebraska. There is no other marking on the envelope to indicate it’s been sent from the federal government.
If you think you may have mistakenly tossed your EIP card, don’t panic. You can still receive your payment by calling the toll-free customer service line at 800-240-8100 (TTY: 800-241-9100) to ask for a replacement. You can also check out the EIP website for additional information and assistance.
Step 2: Activate your cardYour EIP card will be accompanied by a letter with instructions for activating it. If the card has more than one name on it, only the primary cardholder — listed first on the card — may activate it.
Dial 800-240-8100 (TTY: 800-241-9100) and be prepared to share your name, address and Social Security number. You’ll also be asked to create a four-digit PIN, which you’ll use for all ATM transactions, automated assistance, and to hear your balance. For security purposes, it’s best not to use personal information, such as your birth year or home address, as your PIN.
Watch out for scammers! Pay close attention when dialing the number to activate your card. Scammers have set up bogus EIP card call centers and are using numbers that are similar to the official one td banknorth garden by the IRS.
Once your card is activated, you can create a username and password to use your card online at the Money Network site. You can also check out your balance information and transaction history at EIPCard.com or by calling the toll-free number listed above.
Step 3: Use your cardYou can use your EIP card to make purchases anywhere Visa debit cards are accepted.
If you’d rather have your stimulus money in cash, you can get cash back with PIN debit purchases where available, or by withdrawing cash from an ATM that carries the Allpoint brand.
It won’t cost you money to use your card, except for a select few transactions. For example, if you make a balance inquiry at an ATM, you’ll need to pay $0.25. Also, you can make one free withdrawal from an out-of-network ATM, but you’ll be charged $2 for every withdrawal afterward. To find a surcharge-free ATM near you, check out EIPCard.com.
Keep your card safe; if you lose it, you’ll have to pay $7.50 to replace it. It’s also a good idea to keep track of your balance so you don’t end up at the register with a card that’s declined because of an insufficient balance.
What Is Metabank, and Why Is It in Charge of Stimulus Check Debit Cards?
UPDATE: This story was originally published in February 2021. Since then, the United States government has approved and begun distributing a third round of stimulus checks in the amount of $1,400 per person.
Most Americans will receive their third payment via direct deposit, but the IRS is also sending paper checks and prepaid debit cards in the mail. The debit cards, formally called EIP Cards, will arrive in white envelopes emblazoned with the Department of the Treasury seal. The cards themselves will have mentions of Visa, Money Network and MetaBank, N.A. on them.
Read below to learn more about the stimulus check debit cards and how to use them.
Don't throw away that strange letter how to activate money network card online Nebraska you just got in the mail. Even though it might seem sketchy, it's not junk mail — it's your second stimulus check.
The IRS and Treasury Department are in the middle of distributing a round of $600 relief payments to pandemic-stricken Americans. While most went out via direct deposit and many have already appeared in people's bank accounts, some stimulus payments were relegated to snail mail. In addition to paper checks, about 8 million debit cards are now being sent out.
But they don't look quite as official as you may expect.
Formally called Economic Impact Payment Cards, or EIP Cards, the payments are being mailed in plain white envelopes. A small Department of the Treasury seal appears in the corner, but the return address is a P.O. box in Nebraska. There's red writing that declares it's "not a bill or an advertisement," which, if you've ever gotten junk mail before, is normally a sure-fire way to know something's definitely a bill or advertisement. And perhaps most confusingly, the card inside is issued by a company called MetaBank, N.A.
This might pose a problem given how many people accidentally trashed their stimulus checks last time. Here's what you need to know about the debit cards, MetaBank and more.
Why are some stimulus checks being sent as debit cards?
The simple answer is because it's fast. The IRS says it's sending out prepaid debit cards "to speed delivery of the payments to reach as many people as soon as possible." These cards are sponsored by the Bureau of the Fiscal Service.
People in all 50 states as well as Washington, D.C., are getting EIP Cards, especially those who live in the western U.S. The IRS says blackberry key2 doesn't determine who gets a debit card and who gets a check, and there's no guarantee as to which you receive — even if the first stimulus from last year came as a paper check.