Federal Reserve Banks share information in advance of third round of Economic Impact Payments
March 11, 2021
This week, the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 was approved by Congress and signed into law by President Biden. The Federal Reserve Banks continue to work closely with the Department of the Treasury’s Bureau of the Fiscal Service (Fiscal Service) to support the distribution of economic impact payments (EIPs). As your service provider, the Federal Reserve Banks are committed to supporting your institution through round three of EIPs. Similar to the December 22, 2020 communication regarding round two, we hope that your institution finds the following resources beneficial in preparation for the upcoming EIP distributions. We anticipate more detailed information, such as a new company entry description for ACH payments and a sample image of a Treasury EIP check, will be communicated by Fiscal Service soon. Additionally, we encourage financial institutions to review the new legislation for changes such as garnishments or eligibility for this upcoming round of EIP distributions.
EIP debit cards
The EIP Card (Off-site) is sponsored by Fiscal Service, managed by Money Network Financial, LLC and issued by Treasury’s financial agent, MetaBank®, N.A. In addition to ACH and check payments, this prepaid debit card is being used to deliver EIP payments as rapidly as possible. Once activated, the EIP Card can be used anywhere Visa® Debit Cards are accepted: in-store, online or by phone. In addition, there are multiple ways to transfer the funds from an EIP Card to an existing bank account at no cost to the recipient. Please refer to the EIP Card FAQs (Off-site) for more information on ways consumers can transfer the funds from their EIP Cards to their bank accounts. If assistance is needed, EIP Card recipients should contact Money Network Customer Service at (800) 240-8100.
Treasury check and EIP verification
For round three EIPs, the check symbol will be 40447 and will be displayed in the MICR line. Fiscal Service encourages financial institutions and check cashers to verify the security features (Off-site) of a U.S. Treasury check, and to determine the status of EIP checks by using the Treasury Check Verification System (TCVS) (Off-site) for bulk queries using an automated programming interface (API).
Frequently asked questions (FAQs)
Please refer to the Useful Links for COVID-19 Information (Off-site) on the Fiscal Service website for a variety of EIP-related resources, and check these websites frequently for updated information:
- Board of Governors COVID-19 Resources (Off-site)
- Federal Reserve Bank Services COVID-19 Resources
- IRS Economic Impact Payment Information Center (Off-site)
- IRS Get My Payment FAQs (Off-site)
- Fiscal Service EIP Cards (Off-site)
If you have remaining questions, please contact your Federal Reserve account executive.
The Federal Reserve Banks offer multiple services to assist your institution with processing the upcoming EIPs, including the FedPayments® Reporter ACH Received Entries Detail Report and the FedACH Risk® RDFI Alert Service. If your institution already subscribes to these services for analysis and alerts regarding EIPs, you will need to adjust the criteria due to EIP specifications.
Federal Reserve Cash Services has currency inventories sufficient to meet the needs of financial institutions during this third round of EIPs. The Federal Reserve Banks are working closely with our supply chain partners to understand any changes in demand for currency and will support them as needed. We ask our financial institution customers to place reasonable orders for currency that meet the demand of their customers, and not order more currency than is needed. Also, please continue to reassure customers that there will be an ample inventory of currency available to meet their needs throughout the EIP disbursement period.
Having built up cash inventories over the course of the pandemic, financial institutions are more prepared to meet consumer demand for cash now than they were when the first round of payments was processed in March 2020. However, if your financial institution needs to increase its inventory of available cash, please consider spreading orders across multiple weeks to reduce strain on the cash supply chain.
We thank you for your continued efforts during this unprecedented time.