Don't wait for Social Security check in the mail

Apr 15, 2012 Full story: Albany Times Union 15

This two-photo combination image shows, at top, a Feb. 11, 2005 file photo of trays of printed social security checks waiting to be mailed from the U.S. Treasury's Financial Management services facility in Philadelphia, and an undated photo provided by the Treasury Department of a Direct Express Card.

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“Headed toward the cliff”

Since: Nov 07

Tawas City, Michigan

#1 Apr 15, 2012
I can't believe a paper check is still an option. It's a waste of MILLIONS of taxpayer money to send out checks just because old people don't trust electronic deposits. But for some reason they trust a piece of paper that says they are due a certain amount of money.

I wish all businesses would stop accepting personal checks as well. It never fails I get in line behind some old geezer who has to write a check. It take them a half hour just to sign their damn name, then they have to search for their drivers license, then record it in their ledger because they're too cheap to get the duplicate copy checks, but they pay extra to little kittens or ballons or flowers on them......

Obviously this is one of my pet peeves. My Mom is one of those old geezers, even though she has a free debit card from her bank, she refuses to use it. Urgh!

“Headed toward the cliff”

Since: Nov 07

Tawas City, Michigan

#2 Apr 15, 2012
And before anyone complains about bank fees, there are many places that offer free checking accounts with free debit cards. I have accounts at two different banks and neither of them charges me a penny for routine deposits & withdrawls.
breaking news

Fishers, IN

#3 Apr 15, 2012
WeTheSheeple wrote:
I can't believe a paper check is still an option. It's a waste of MILLIONS of taxpayer money to send out checks just because old people don't trust electronic deposits. But for some reason they trust a piece of paper that says they are due a certain amount of money.
I wish all businesses would stop accepting personal checks as well. It never fails I get in line behind some old geezer who has to write a check. It take them a half hour just to sign their damn name, then they have to search for their drivers license, then record it in their ledger because they're too cheap to get the duplicate copy checks, but they pay extra to little kittens or ballons or flowers on them......
Obviously this is one of my pet peeves. My Mom is one of those old geezers, even though she has a free debit card from her bank, she refuses to use it. Urgh!
U think dis is Korea fone bank or what..where hav you been UK this US OK ;-00
breaking news

Fishers, IN

#4 Apr 15, 2012
WeTheSheeple wrote:
And before anyone complains about bank fees, there are many places that offer free checking accounts with free debit cards. I have accounts at two different banks and neither of them charges me a penny for routine deposits & withdrawls.
U mean Ford Motor Bank!!;-00h, hope U not in dr. Bill_mr! Chase Bank ;-00h, do you wanne put yo Dollar in iBank
;-000

Since: Jul 10

Location hidden

#8 Apr 15, 2012
WeTheSheeple wrote:
And before anyone complains about bank fees, there are many places that offer free checking accounts with free debit cards. I have accounts at two different banks and neither of them charges me a penny for routine deposits & withdrawls.
==========

I have a couple of senior neighbors who are penalized with monthly checking account fees because they don't have a computer and internet service and cannot do electronic banking. They get charged $3 a month for paper statements, which until recently were free. One seniors monthly SS check is $794. Three-bucks is a lot.

Since: Jul 10

Location hidden

#9 Apr 15, 2012
About four-million Social Security recipients don't have bank accounts.

A few years ago Social Security started a debit card for recipients that can be used for cash from ATM and to make purchases with, but not sure about how it would work for paying bills. Maybe just set up automatic pay with company to deduct amount owed each month.

Problems with debit card would be keeping up with it and fees charged for using it at various ATM's. Could be much more expensive than a bank account.

I got a refund from state in form of debit card and it was difficult to find an ATM that did not charge for a transaction, and of course we all know about the Federal Income Tax fraud perpetrated with IRS Debit Card refunds. Seniors with debit cards would be targets for fraud with SS Debit Cards.

“Headed toward the cliff”

Since: Nov 07

Tawas City, Michigan

#11 Apr 15, 2012
WMCOL wrote:
<quoted text>
==========
I have a couple of senior neighbors who are penalized with monthly checking account fees because they don't have a computer and internet service and cannot do electronic banking. They get charged $3 a month for paper statements, which until recently were free. One seniors monthly SS check is $794. Three-bucks is a lot.
I'd find a new bank immediately. Try a credit union instead.
Roadrunner

Perry, MI

#13 Apr 16, 2012
Just a little something to think about as well, some people who have a lot of unpaid medical bills, and who are disabled and recieving SSD, don't want to have a bank account because those creditors can come and take every penny out of their bank account with a court ordered garnishment, even if payment arrangements have been made. There are other ways to get around this (a prepaid debit card with no bank involved) but it is something that those who have past unpaid medicals bills worry about. I know first hand, I am one of those people. I had COBRA that I'm still fighting with over five years later to get them to pay what they said they would and should have, but they haven't, and now I have creditors coming after me. If had a bank account, they would eventually find me, get a garnishment and my very little bit of income would be wiped out before I even got notice of the garnishment. It happened, I know. Just a little something to ponder.
WeTheSheeple wrote:
And before anyone complains about bank fees, there are many places that offer free checking accounts with free debit cards. I have accounts at two different banks and neither of them charges me a penny for routine deposits & withdrawls.
Roadrunner

Perry, MI

#14 Apr 16, 2012
Well, and then there is the case where you don't know if you're being charged a fee to use your card as either a debit card or credit card when making a purchase at a store. Some stores do charge fees when using your debit card as a debit card at check out, I believe. I'm not positive. And MOST ATM's charge a fee to withdraw from them. The no fee ones are hard to find and could quite possibly be out of the way for those who depend on other sources of transportation to get around, and have to use what is easy and accessible to them at the time. I use a prepaid VISA card that I reload at WalMart. They charge me $3.00 to cash my check and reload my card, and I pay fees at a lot of places that take my debit card. BUT, it's a lot better than being garnished and having them wipe out my entire bank account like I've had happen in the past for a medical bill. But, those fees here and there add up when you are already on a very tight month to month budget with SSD.
WeTheSheeple wrote:
<quoted text>
I'd find a new bank immediately. Try a credit union instead.

Since: Jul 10

Location hidden

#15 Apr 16, 2012
WeTheSheeple wrote:
<quoted text>
I'd find a new bank immediately. Try a credit union instead.
Most do the same thing. While the account may remain senior "free", paper statements incur a monthly charge. Otherwise the rest of the "free" account stays the same, except some "free" accounts are now charging for new check orders.

“Headed toward the cliff”

Since: Nov 07

Tawas City, Michigan

#18 Apr 16, 2012
WMCOL wrote:
<quoted text>
Most do the same thing. While the account may remain senior "free", paper statements incur a monthly charge. Otherwise the rest of the "free" account stays the same, except some "free" accounts are now charging for new check orders.
I haven't paid a fee at either of my credit unions for years. If you can't find a no fee account, then you'll just have to suck it up. Remember most places charge $3 or more to cash your social security check.

Now you'll tell me all the places you can cash them for free......
Roadrunner

Perry, MI

#19 Apr 16, 2012
I am not expecting "freebies". I pay my copayments that I'm responsible for. The initial hospital stay was well over $900K. I paid for the COBRA insurance that was supposed to pay almost all of it (since my insurance was cut off two days after I was admitted, the day before my first surgery.) I pay for my premiums. The bills are simply being ignored by the insurance company for one reason or another. I've been going round and round with both the creditors and the insurance company. I am gaining ground, but I still have quite a large sum of medical bills out there that should have been covered. I HAVE been dealing with this, writing letters, making phone calls, etc. Don't assume that I'm some deadbeat because the insurance companies are dragging their feet. And I'm not some deadbeat because I don't have a bank account. I don't need Suze Orman or anyone else to tell me how to manage what little money I do have. And, yes, some of them that should have been paid already, I'm making small monthly payments on. They could still try to garnish me however. It happened once already. I won't go through that again.
No on Obama wrote:
<quoted text>
Well that's too bad. You will have to just take responsibility then and don't expect the freebies. They are for those who show responsibility and have decent minimum balances. They are not for those trying to dodge paying what they owe.
I'd suggest you watch Suze Orman or email her. She has addressed situations like you describe. You are assuming your bank account would be garnished eventually. You evidently don't have one. Are you making whatever payments you agreed to?
There are laws protecting people from unfair harrassment from creditors. It sounds like you need more information and advice from experts who are there to help people with poor credit ratings restablish themselves. I think you are not having a bank account based on old false information or failure to take whatever steps are available to you to protect yourself from harrassment from creditors. It seems like COBRA would have no legal basis for going after you and that you would have the agreement you claim in writing.
Sometimes it takes these insurers a long time to straighten things out. I have occasionally been billed for a blood test or lab services in error and it took several telephone calls to settle things. In the meantime, every month a bill would come. The important thing is to FOLLOW UP and SHOW YOU ARE RESPONSIBLE and not trying to dodge your debts. Contact them and find out what is what. I see no reason why you need to avoid having a bank account based on what you say. You are probably wasting lots of your energy and money trying to avoid something unnecessarily and this is not good for anyone's health, especially if you have existing medical conditions to begin with! Good luck. Contact Suze Orman or some of the other financial gurus out there if need be.
Roadrunner

Perry, MI

#20 Apr 16, 2012
Wow. You sound like you're about 80. Do you yell at kids to stay off your lawn as well? I went to the gas station/convenience store last night, bought some snacks to have last night, and I'm not some overweight loser like you claim they all are. I was having a bad salt and sweet craving, two things we don't usually keep in the house (try to stick to healthy snacks and foods.) But I'm allowed to splurge every once in a while, and the local grocery store was closed, and 7-11 was another 4 miles away. It didn't take me 10-15 minutes to purchase what I wanted. It sounds like you have problems with change, and want everything like it was when you walked 10 miles uphill barefoot to school. LOL
No on Obama wrote:
<quoted text>
Yes, I agree and do not like debit cards, free or not. Same with ATM cards. Why does anyone need them? They are rather new and did not exist for years and people got by just fine. All one has to do is be organized and have a budget. I used to occasionally use the atm's for cash but stopped because of security concerns, hassle with parking, the price of gas, remembering the PIN, being ripped off at gas stations when using a credit card and they had a reader or whatever in their pumps. Got my statement and about ten charges for items I did not purchase!
It really irks me to see how stupid and lazy so many people have become. There is a standard gas station I go to in the neighborhood that has been there for years. They used to have a mechanic, a garage and NO MC DONALD'S or convenience items sold.
They remodeled it some ten years or so ago, removed the garage and laid off the mechanic, put in a MC DONALD'S and a convenience store, and sold or hired the rudest foreigners to operate the gas station.
There is parking for all the fatsos going in to buy the items that will make them even fatter and run up our health care costs. Of course, these same people drive the biggest SUV'S, drive between the pumps to fill up with their brats blaring music while they do it on their cell phones or smoking. Then they leave the car to go into the clerk to buy junk food and/or pay for the gas, often taking up the space for 15 or 10 minutes. Others waiting for gas have to sit in what available space behind these hogs to move in order to drive to a pump.
I was so disgusted the last time I went there I made it a point to drive around looking for another station. To my delight, it only took about three miles to discover a great station that gave me full service just like they in the olden days and the prices were the same as the other place. From now on, I'm going to go there. They do not have a McDonald's, convenience store but do have a garage!
I am also leery of eating at any McDonald's on a gas station lot. How do we know the water lines aren't contaminated with lead or other toxic substances? There are many cases of lies and coverups and I don't believe that food establishments have any business being there and don't trust the authorities to enforce the laws designed to protect the consumers. Could this be a reason there are so many autistic children now?
If I want cash, I plan to get it at the market when I shop for groceries. I have a check cashing card and just write a check for the amount of cash I want up to whatever the limit is. Or, I withdraw what I need when I'm there at the bank branch they have. I haven't paid any bank fees for years, nor debit card fees nor ATM card fees. In the past, I have occasionally overdrawn my account usually because I'd used an ATM and forgot to subtract it in my register as I was in a hurry due to security concerns or some rude person blaring their horn wanting my parking spot and was sickened to have to pay the bank charges for a chedk with NSF!
Roadrunner

Perry, MI

#21 Apr 16, 2012
Or that people are expecting "freebies" by collecting Social Security. Ugh.
WeTheSheeple wrote:
<quoted text>
I haven't paid a fee at either of my credit unions for years. If you can't find a no fee account, then you'll just have to suck it up. Remember most places charge $3 or more to cash your social security check.
Now you'll tell me all the places you can cash them for free......
e3mrk

Avon Lake, OH

#23 Apr 17, 2012
We use a Credit Union now because Our Bank was going fee crazy.
They got so bad that it just wasn't worth staying with Them.
They wanted to charge a Monthly Fee just to have a ATM Card.
Now They can charge all They want but not from Us.

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