What Is an EIP Card? Everything You Need to Know About How Second Stimulus Payments Could Arrive

Jacquie Cadorette
September 01, 2020 - 3:00 am

With many on the edge of their seats, hoping for a second round of stimulus payments, many believe that it won't come in the form of a check this time. Instead, those eligible may receive an EIP card.

What is an EIP card?

An EIP card, which stands for Economic Impact Payment card, is a prepaid debit card. Recipients can either pay directly with the card or transfer the money from the card into a bank account, CNET reports.

In May, around 4 million people received an EIP card in lieu of a normal check for the first round of stimulus payments. The cards are being used to distribute money allocated under the CARES Act.

Being a Visa debit card, users are able to make payments and purchases, get cash from ATMs and transfer funds to personal bank account without accruing a fee.

The card can be activated using the EIP card website.

EIP cards are available only if your last tax return provided up-to-date banking information. They would be mailed to the address listed on said tax returns.

What if something happens to your EIP card?

If your EIP card is lost or damaged, you can request another one for free by using the MetaBank Customer Service.

Will there be a second stimulus payment?

As it stands, House Democrats and Senate Republicans have been unable to agree on the specifics of the next round of stimulus payments. Some believe that a second stimulus payment isn't necessary.

The maximum amount that a single taxpayer could receive under a stimulus package is $1,200. More substantial sums depend on how many children you claim on your tax returns.

Should the bill for the second stimulus payment be passed, it's possible you could receive the money through direct deposit, paper check, or EIP card. If you received an EIP card the first time around, it's likely that you would receive your money in this format a second time.

Currently, House Democrats and White House officials are unable to reach middle ground on a deal, with Democrats willing to come down to $2 trillion from their original $3 trillion proposal, and the White House refusing to come up above its desired $1 trillion price point.

According to CNET, Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi has said, "We hope Republicans will come to the table and accept our lower offer to save the lives an livelihoods of the American people."

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