Posted on 10 January 2013
By Mark Miller
A procrastinators’ alert: anyone who gets a benefit check from the federal government has less than two months to go paperless.
March 1 is the deadline for nearly everyone who receives Social Security, Supplemental Security Income (SSI) or veterans’ benefits to switch to the government’s new electronic payment system. The Go Direct program – launched in 2005 – has already converted 93 percent of all benefit payments; new recipients have been all paperless since 2011.
After March 1, the only remaining exceptions will be beneficiaries over age 90, residents of remote areas that lack electronic payment options, or people with mental impairment issues that hamper their ability to manage finances.
Folks who don’t meet the deadline will continue to receive their benefit checks, officials concede. But they also can expect to hear from the federal government, which will be intensifying efforts to finish the conversion after March 1.
Learn more about navigating your options for electronic payments in my Reuters Money column today.