Wintering down south? Get your benefit cheques faster
(NC)—Canadians who forward their mail down south may sometimes worry if their federal benefit cheques will arrive on time or get lost. Now that the federal government is phasing out cheques in favour of direct deposit, much of the worry can be eliminated.
Already, more than 80 percent payments made to Canadians are by direct deposit because of its convenience, reliability, security and cost-efficiency. With fewer cheques to print or mail, the federal government stands to save $17.4 million a year. The cost to produce a cheque is approximately 82 cents while direct deposit only costs 13 cents.
According to Public Works and Government Services Canada, most of Canada's seniors already receive payments such as the Canada Pension Plan, Old Age Security and Guaranteed Income Supplement through direct deposits to their bank accounts. To date, 90 percent of CPP payments to recipients and 92 percent of OAS payments made to beneficiaries are received electronically. The remaining few who don't already get their money this way are being encouraged to sign up soon rather than wait for the 2016 deadline.
By registering for direct deposit at your financial institution, online at www.directdeposit.gc.ca or at 1-800-O-Canada, money that is owed to you for things such as CPP or OAS, plus veterans' benefits or tax refunds, can be deposited faster and more reliably directly into your bank account.
If you aren't signing up online, you can still visit your local bank branch and make the necessary arrangements in person. It's a simple matter of filling out a form. Once completed, payments from that point on will be deposited directly into one or several of your bank accounts, according to your preference.
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