Switch to Federal Benefits Electronic Payment via Go Direct

Since March 1, 2013, a directive was released requiring federal benefit recipients to get their payments electronically. The final mandate to go paperless was ruled on December 2010. If you’re still receiving paper cheques, by law, you’re required to switch and choose an electronic payment option. You can do this through Go Direct.

About Go Direct

Go Direct is a campaign introduced in 2005 by Treasury and Federal Reserve Banks. The campaign was established to encourage cheque recipients of federal benefit payments to convert to direct deposit. The Treasury Department chose the campaign for three reasons: electronic payments are safer, they give recipients easy and immediate access to their funds, and issues with e-payment are considerably low. And while the campaign doesn’t actively inform US citizens about the requirements anymore, its website is still the main source for regulation efforts.

How to Switch to Federal Benefits Electronic Payment via Go Direct

Receiving e-payment for federal benefits applies to people who get the following benefit cheques: VA, Social Security, SSI, Black Lung, Railroad Retirement Road, and Office of Personnel Management. To switch to electronic payment, you have to:

  • Go to Go Direct homepage (check related link below).
  • Look for the “sign up” link on the Switch to Electronic Payments Today statement. Click it. The link will redirect you to another page.
  • Choose which option you prefer: Direct Deposit or Prepaid Debit Card. If you already have a bank account, the former is the better option for you. Otherwise, choose the latter.
  • Click the “Get Direct Deposit” button. It’ll direct you to another page. Read the security notification and then click “Continue.”
  • Provide all the required personal information needed. You also need to input your federal benefit information and direct deposit details so make sure you have those information ready. Then, submit your application.
  • Alternatively, choose the “Direct Express” button if you don’t have a bank account or prefer the debit card. A pop-up window will inform you that you’re leaving the Go Direct site. Click “OK.” You’ll be redirected to another page.
  • Look for the “free” link on the Benefits of Direct Deposit statement. It’ll direct you to Direct Deposit FAQ. Read relevant information for application like fees and steps on how to use the card.
  • To enrol for a Direct Deposit, either visit Direct Express or call its hotline (check related link and information below).

And you’re done. For further questions or additional information, go to Go Direct FAQ.

Helpful Links and Information:

Go Direct Homepage: www.godirect.org

Direct Express Site: www.USDirectExpress.com

Direct Express Hotline: 1-800-333-1795