IRS Stimulus: Wells Fargo Facing Backlash Over Withholding Checks

by Madison Miller
irs-stimulus-wells-fargo-facing-backlash-over-withholding-checks

If you’ve been refreshing an online banking app this entire weekend, you’re certainly not alone. Americans are anxiously anticipating the third IRS stimulus check that was passed by President Joe Biden earlier this week.

He signed the $1.9 trillion COVID relief plan into law on March 11. This included a $1,400 direct payment stimulus check to those who qualify. It is the “American Rescue Plan.”

In addition to stimulus checks, the law will help schools and colleges reopen, fund vaccine distribution, as well as other methods of assisting Americans in recovering from the pandemic that has been prevalent for over a year. One example is the $25 billion going to restaurants and bars to help with payroll, rent, and utilities.

It was announced that the first round of the COVID-19 relief checks would hit bank accounts this weekend. However, some Americans are discovering their banks will be delaying that first check.

IRS Stimulus Check, Wells Fargo Controversy

According to HuffPost, Wells Fargo and Chase said that they won’t be issuing the stimulus checks until Wednesday, March 17. Even if the money arrives in accounts earlier, some banks are waiting until the effective date the U.S. Treasury has given.

This means that even if the money appears in someone’s account, it will not be available to use until March 17.

This isn’t uncommon for stimulus checks. Sometimes larger banks take a few days to actually credit the money to an account.

Luckily, those with direct deposit will receive their checks faster than those with no direct deposit on file. These individuals will be getting paper checks or new debit cards in the mail.

While it may seem like people are just being impatient, the annoyance comes from the way banks will be prospering. The stall in payment until March 17 will let banks get interest off the pending deposit money. The delay can boost loans to other customers and overall improve profits.

The bank has stated its alliance with the official payment day on their site and on social media.

Expected Arrival of Checks

Many banks have a similar strategy for disseminating the check. For whatever reason, Wells Fargo customers are particularly outraged. Everyone can use the “Get my Payment” portal to track the status of the stimulus check.

According to CNN, Wells Fargo, JPMorgan Chase, and Bank of America all earned more than $6.4 million last year from overdraft fees. These fees have a huge impact on low-income families that live paycheck to paycheck.

Some people are considering the possibility that by holding onto the checks longer, more people will likely be forced into overdraft fees. This will provide banks profit from a surplus of overdrafts.

The current tax season could cause a delay in getting the stimulus checks as well. The IRS is juggling sending stimulus checks as well as trying to process everyone’s tax returns.

Regardless of any kind of delay, Americans can expect to see stimulus check money in the next few weeks. Most direct deposits will appear in the middle of next week. Combined with the $600 check from December, Americans are getting a total of $2,000 just a few months apart.

Outsider.com