DEAR ABBY: Please help me spread an important message to people who receive Social Security or other federal benefits each month via one of the estimated 5.4 million paper checks each month. Starting March 1, the Treasury Department is requiring all Social Security, VA, SSI and other federal beneficiaries receive their benefits by electronic payment. Senior citizens and other federal beneficiaries may choose either direct deposit or the Treasury-recommended Direct Express Debit MasterCard.
This new payment method is not optional - it is the law. Besides saving taxpayers money, switching to electronic payments provides a safer, more-convenient and cost-effective way for people to get their federal benefits than paper checks.