Direct deposit will soon be available to Maryland unemployment insurance claimants

Posted at 3:03 PM, Feb 23, 2021
and last updated 2021-02-23 19:13:45-05

MARYLAND — Direct deposit will soon be available to Maryland unemployment insurance claimants.

Secretary of Labor Tiffany Robinson said the state is switching their unemployment insurance payment vendor from Bank of America to Wells Fargo.

Beginning in April, claimants will have the option for direct deposit or paper check. The department is doing away with debit cards to cut down on fraud.

Direct deposit will allow newly approved claimants to receive their first benefit payment much faster because they will no longer need to wait 7-10 business days to receive a physical debit card through the postal service.

Maryland is one of only three states that doesn't currently offer direct deposit to unemployment insurance claimants.

Robinson said the state has been working with Wells Fargo on this relationship for months.

"It's going to be faster, safer, more convenient for our claimants and we are going to start moving people from the debit cards to direct deposit in April," Robinson said to WMAR-2 News Mallory Sofastaii.

Robinson added that the state Treasurer's Office already has a contract with Wells Fargo and it should be an easy transition for customers.

Claimants will enroll by entering their bank account information right into their BEACON portal.

If claimant's don't have a bank account, they will be provided with the option to receive a paper check.

A claimant’s benefit payment will be automatically and directly deposited into their account every week that they request benefits and are determined eligible to receive payment. There will no longer be a need to keep and retain a separate debit card for benefits. Claimants can easily access and spend their benefits directly from their personal bank account.