Direct Express Debit Card Complaints

We have been writing about the Direct Express card since 2013 and during this time, we have heard Direct Express Debit Card Complaints from our readers. Here are the top three complaints we usually hear and what to do about it:

"Direct Express Debit Card Complaints"

Top 3 Direct Express Debit Card Complaints

Hard to Reach Customer Service

We have written about how to reach Direct Express Customer Service and how to speak to a live person. If you read the comments section of the post, especially the Facebook comments below the article, you will find that card holders are having a hard time getting help from customer service. Not only is it hard to get someone on the phone but even when you do, they are sometimes not helpful, which increases the frustration of our readers. If you want tips on how to get your issues resolved, read our comments section on customer service. You will learn about tricks and tips other card holders have used to get their issues resolved

Frustrations with Card Replacement

Another issue that our readers have repeatedly complained about is the process for getting a card replacement. As you can imagine, when you lose your debit card, you want to get a replacement sent quickly so you are able to make purchases and pay for things you need to buy. We have an article on how to get your expired/lost or stolen card replaced here. However, what we have found is that it takes too long for people to get their replacement card and sometimes. Most people would like to be given a tracking number so they can track their card in the mail but that is often not the case.

How long it takes for Dispute Resolution

When you have a dispute about charges on your card, it’s very cumbersome to get that process. When you call customer service, you would expect that they will take down your information and what transactions you are trying to dispute, the circumstances of the issue – and then they will look into it. That’s not what happens with Direct Express dispute resolution. They will mail you a packet for you to complete, which you then have to mail or fax to them. That’s when things get lost and some customers have to refile the same complaints, hoping that Direct Express receives their complaint/dispute packet and investigates the issue promptly.

For more complaints about Direct Express, see Consumer Affairs’ list of complaints here.

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New Direct Express Card With Chip

If your Direct Express card has expired or you got a replacement card because your card was lost or stolen, you will notice that there is a new direct express card with chip. This post will explain why your new card comes with chip and how to use it. We will also explain why chip technology is the future and what it means for fraud prevention and safety of your card.

"New Direct Express Card With Chip"

Direct Express Card With Chip

The main purpose for banks moving to chip technology is to to offer added security against fraud. As you will probably notice, the new cards look like your old Direct Express debit card, with one exception: it comes with a small square metallic chip on the front. That chip is what holds your payment data. Previously, that payment data was stored on the magnetic stripe on your old card. The metallic chip is designed to reduce fraud, including counterfeiting.

How it Works

When you are ready to make a purchase in a store or make a payment in a store, instead of swiping your card, you’ll put it into a chip reader for a few seconds. (Most stores have added chip readers to their credit card terminals. If there is a chip reader, the cashier will instruct you to insert the chip). Then you might have to sign or enter a PIN. With each transaction, the chip generates a unique code needed for approval. The code is good only for that transaction. Because the security code is always changing, it’s much more difficult for someone to steal and use.

One thing you need to keep in mind is that how you use your card online and by phone will NOT change. That means chip cards won’t prevent crooks from using stolen card numbers to buy online or by phone. So it’s a good idea to still guard your card information closely, and check statements for suspicious activity.

The Rest of the World Has Moved to Chip Technology

A big part of the developed world is already using chip technology because it’s safer. The United States is just playing catch up. Here is a map showing you where chip technology is currently being used.

"New Direct Express Card With Chip"

Questions and Concerns about cards with Chip Technology

There are a lot of misconceptions about chip technology. There are even claims out there that people can wirelessly scan your card information through the chip. Here is a quick video from famous Personal Finance guru, Dave Ramsey explaining what the chip technology is about. We hope this will help clear some of the false and misleading information out there about chip technology.

We hope this article was helpful in explaining how the direct express card with chip technology works. If you have additional questions, please let us know in the comments section below. If you have questions about card specific issues, call customer service.

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How to get Direct Express Routing Number

If you have been looking for the Direct Express Routing Number on their website and cannot locate it, it’s because they don’t publicly display it on their site – but we can help you. If you have received a Direct Express debit card and would like to set up direct deposit for your federal payments, including Social Security, follow the steps below:

"direct express routing number"

Direct Express Routing Number & Direct Deposit

Step 1

Before you can use your new card to begin making purchases or paying bills online, you need to call 1-800-967-5042 between 8:00am and 8:00pm (Eastern Time) Monday through Friday, to speak to a customer service representative. If you are having a hard time speaking to a live person, click here to see this article for tips on how to reach a Direct Express representative quickly. Once you reach a representative, they will be able to assist you to complete your direct express direct deposit enrollment process.

Step 2

Once enrollment is complete, your federal benefits payment should start arriving on your direct deposit account on the scheduled date. If you are receiving social security, here is the payment schedule.

Benefits of Direct Express Card

Pay Bills

You can pay bills with your Direct Express card, as long as the company you are paying accepts Debit MasterCard. You can also use the direct express card to pay bills online. To do that, you have to login to Direct Express and follow the online bill pay instructions. There is no fee to pay bills online through your direct express account.

Get Alerts

With increased fraud on debit cards, you should consider getting alerts from Direct Express. There are two types of alerts you can get. The first one is an email or text message that is set to your phone to let you know when your federal benefit payment has been deposited on your card. The second alert you can get, also via email or as a text message on your to let you know when your balance is low. This allows you to get an early warning if your card or account becomes compromised or is fraudulently used.

We hope this article was helpful. If you have trouble setting up your Direct Express Direct Deposit, let us know in the comments section below.

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Direct Express Website Down Right Now?

Are you trying to login to your Direct Express account online but the Direct Express website is down or not loading up? Here’s what you need to do:

Step 1 – Confirm that Website is down

You will save a lot of time and frustration by confirming that the website is indeed down and not working. If you are trying to access the site via a desktop computer, then trying login in via a smart phone or tablet with the wifi turned off. You want to make sure this problem has nothing to do with your own internet connection or network. Similarly, if you are trying to log in via phone or tablet, then try logging in with a desktop computer. If you still cannot access the site, then there is a problem. You should then call customer service.

Step 2 – Call Direct Express Customer Service

Call customer service to find out what the issue is with the Direct Express Website and the estimated time when they think it will be back up and running. Since the website is down, chances are everyone is calling customer service so you should probably be patient if you cannot get through to them immediately. Also, on any given day, cardholders have reported that it is very hard getting hold of customer service and speaking to a human. We therefore expect that your hold time when the website is down is even going to be longer.

Step 3 – Check Social Media

One of the ways to confirm whether the site is down or when it will be back up is to check social media and see what other cardholders are saying. You should be able to find information online by going to Twitter or Facebook and typing in the hashtag #direct express. That should pull up any current posts about direct express. You may be able to also see an update directly from direct express. Here is their Twitter page.

Use Mobile App as Alternative

"Direct Express Website"

If the Direct Express website is down, you may be able to use the Direct Express Mobile Application, which we have reviewed here and highly recommend to cardholders. It is unusual for the website and the app to be both down at the same time so if you cannot access the site via desktop computer or mobile phone or tablet, you should try downloading the mobile application and logging in that way.

Have you been trying to log into your direct express account and found out the website is down? Did you call customer service? Did you try using the mobile app? Share your experience with us below in the comments section.

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Direct Express App Review

Before you download the app, read our Direct Express App Review. If you don’t already know, the Direct Express card now comes with a mobile application on both Google Android devices and on iOS for Apple’s iPhone and iPad. See our full review below on what you need to know and whether the app is worth downloading.

"Direct Express App Review"

What the Direct Express App Does

The mobile application allows you to do three main functions:

Manage Your Account

With the Mobile app, you can manage your direct express account over the phone. This includes checking your balance, viewing your transaction history, like any deposits of your benefits that may have come in. One neat feature is that you can create an alert to send you a text message when a deposit is made into your account. This is important for those who need to know with certainty that their benefits has been deposited into their account on time. If you are one of those people with bills scheduled to come out of your account and need to know that your money is in, then you will like this feature very much.

Find ATMs

The next important feature that comes with the mobile app is the ability to find the nearest Direct Express ATM near you. If you are one of those people that hate ATM fees, then finding the nearest free ATM for Direct Express is a feature you are going to like on the mobile application. Just as a reminder, the image below shows you the direct express ATM network and how to avoid surcharges.

"Direct-Express-Free-ATM-Network"

PayPerks

The app also comes with PayPerks, which allows you to get familiar with the direct express card and discover ways to use your card that earn chances to win cash prices and rewards.

Here are some more images from the app. Next, we answer the question of whether you should download the app or not.

"Direct Express iphone ipad app"  "Direct Express Android App''

Is it worth Downloading the Direct Express App?

Our answer is YES! Given the problems some cardholders have had trying to contact customer service for simple tasks like checking available balance, reviewing transactions or finding out about a deposit, downloading the mobile app puts all these functions at your finger tips. Also, the alert function helps you stay on top of your money and know immediately when your Social Security or SSI benefits have been deposited into your account. And finally, the “Find ATMs” feature is a very convenient reason to download the app, because it saves you money.

How to Download the App

To download the mobile app, you must have a smart phone. It is best to download apps when you have wifi access, so that you are not using your data plan. If you have an Android phone, click here to download the android app. If you have an iPhone or iPad, click here to download the Apple iOS app.

Do you currently use the Direct Express app? What are your thoughts on the app? Tell us in the comments section below.

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Top Social Security Questions Answered by Video

Do you have Social Security Questions? Social Security is a complicated system with lots of rules. Even for those receiving benefits, there are still questions about ongoing benefit amounts, increases, how long the program will be around, and what Congress may or may not be doing to protect Social Security Benefits. If you are new to Social Security or are getting ready to apply, we also have videos below that answer your questions. Scroll through the videos below. We are positive you will find a video that answers a question you already have or addresses a topic you did not know about.

Social Security Questions Answered

The Ten-Question Social Security Quiz

The video below is one of our favorites because it tests your knowledge about social security. Mass Mutual Life Insurance distributed a 10-question true/false quiz on Social Security to 1,500 adults. Only 28% received a passing grade, and only ONE person got all ten questions right. See if you can get all 10 questions correct.

How Does Social Security Really Work?

This video does a great job of providing you with how social security works, including how it got started, changes over the years with retirement age, benefit amount and how other categories of people (spouses, children, people with disability) have been added to the program over the years.

How to Maximize My Social Security Income

This is a long video, but worth it. You will learn a ton and you will be glad you did. The video goes into strategies on how to maximize your social security income and how you can prepare yourself to take get the maximum benefit.

We will be posting more useful videos as we find them, so check back regularly on this page to see our new content of relevant videos on social security benefits, including any changes or legislation that may be in the pipeline or about to take effect that may impact your benefits.

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Social Security Payment Schedule 2017

If you’ve just been approved for Social Security benefits or have been receiving Social Security benefits for a while and would like to know the Payment Schedule 2017, you’ve come to the right place. Just like we have done for 2016, we are sharing the 2017 schedule, which we pulled directly from the Social Security Administrations’s website. See below for the full calendar. Many people look at the schedule below and are confused by how it all works. We can help. Here’s what you need to know:

Your payment date depends on when you started your social security benefits. Look at the image below for more details on the Social Security Payment Schedule 2017:

"Social Security Payment Schedule 2016"

As you can see, if you started getting benefits before April 30, 1997, the deposit schedule for your Social Security is pretty simple. You get your money on the third of each month. However, if you get both Social Security and Supplemental Security Income (SSI), then you will get your SSI payment on the first of each month and your social security on the third of the month.

If you started to get benefits after May, 1997, then your deposit schedule gets a little more complicated, based on when your birthday falls on the month as explained in the image above. You could be getting your money the second wednesday, the third wednesday or the fourth Wednesday of the month. All that information is put together in the schedule below.

Social Security Payment Schedule 2017

"Social Security Payment Schedule 2017"

You can also download it in PDF format here.

In the rare situation where your payment does not get deposited, you should allow three days to pass after your payment date before you contact Social Security. Missed payments do not usually happen so the Social Security Administration would like you to wait a few days before you call them since it may be just a delay on your bank’s end. If you are still having problems getting your payment on time, then please tell us in the comments section below. There may be someone else who has experienced the same issue before and may have found a solution to it.

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Social Security Payment Schedule 2016

Are you currently receiving Social Security or have you just been approved to receive Social Security benefits or Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and would like to know the Social Security Payment Schedule 2016? See below for the full calendar. But first, you need to understand how the payment schedule works. Here is what you need to know:

Your payment date depends on when you started your social security benefits. The image below explains how it works:

"Social Security Payment Schedule 2016"

Here is the Calendar for 2016

"Social Security Payment Dates 2016"
You can also download it in PDF format by clicking here.

In case you did not receive your payment on the date indicated above in the calendar, The Social Security Administration asks that you allow three days to pass after your payment date before you contact Social Security. It is very rare for payments to be missed, especially now that most payments are made by direct deposit, however, glitches sometimes happen when you are processing millions of benefit payments, so if you did not receive your money on time and have waited the 3 days, call Social Security for help.

Frequently Asked Questions about Social Security Payments

If I am getting survivor’s benefits, what will by payment date be?

If you are a spouse and are receiving survivor’s benefits, the payment date will be based on the birth date of the deceased individual upon whose work record the benefit payments are being made.

Can I have the direct deposit of my Social Security benefit split between two bank accounts?

No. At the moment, Social Security benefits can only be deposited into one bank account (e.g. checking account, savings account, and prepaid card account). You can however schedule with your bank to have them transfer the all or some of the money into another account that you own. You may even be able to do this yourself online where you schedule monthly transfers into a different bank account.

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Social Security Payment Schedule

If you receive Social Security benefits or Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and would like to know when your payment will be deposited into your account each month, you’ve come to the right place. For the most part, the date on which you receive your payment depends on whether you started receiving social security benefits before or after May 1997. Here is the Social Security Payment Schedule.

If you received Social Security on or before April 30, 1997, your payment date is usually the third of the month. People eligible for both Social Security and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) generally receive SSI on the first and their Social Security on the third of the month. However, if the third falls on a day when banks and credit unions are closed, then you will receive your payment a day or two earlier.

If you started receiving benefits after May 1997, then your benefit payment is made on one Wednesday of the month, depending on your birth date.

  • If your birthday falls on the 1st to the 10th of your birth month, you’ll receive your payments on the second Wednesday of each month.
  • If your birthday falls on the 11th to the 20th of your birth month, you’ll receive your payments on the third Wednesday of each month.
  • If your birthday falls on the 21st to the 31st of your birth month, you’ll receive your payments on the fourth Wednesday of each month.

Note that if you are a spouse receiving survivor’s benefits, the payment date will be based on the birth date of the deceased individual upon whose work record the benefit payments are being made.

If you do not receive your benefit payment by the date expected, allow three days to pass after your payment date before you contact Social Security.

Social Security Payment Schedule

The image below provides a helpful summary:

"Social Security Payment Schedule"

For the 2016 Schedule, click here.

Are you having problems receiving your benefits, tell us below in the comments section.

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