(NC) — Forget about walking down the lane or driving to the post office to pick up your federal benefit cheque. The majority of Canadians now receive their federal payments electronically through direct deposit into their bank accounts.
Four out of five Canadians—parents, seniors, veterans, students, businesses and Aboriginal people—have enrolled in direct deposit, the federal program to eliminate paper cheques by the year 2016. More than 90 percent of pensioners currently receive their Canada Pension Plan or Old Age Security payments through direct deposit while 95 percent of current or retired federal government employees receive electronic payments. There are some holdouts such as those receiving GST/HST credits (only 54.8 percent are enrolled in direct deposit) and Canadians waiting for their income tax refunds (only 43.9 percent are enrolled). Perhaps the holdouts are concerned about reliability or security or are simply unaware of the direct deposit program.
If enrolling in direct deposit is on your list of things to do this spring, consider these benefits and you may just find yourself signing up today:
• Direct deposit is safer and more secure than paper cheques.
• The payments cannot be lost or stolen.
• The processing time is faster and more reliable.
• There is no need to wait for the mail or visit a bank. You can still go to the bank to pay your bills in person and update your pass book if you like.
• Payments are deposited directly to your bank account so money is available even if you have moved or are away on business or holidays.
• Your payments will not be affected by delays in postal delivery.
• You can reduce your carbon footprint by supporting a program that will save 32,000 trees a year and reduces greenhouse gas emissions by eliminating transportation of cheques.
• As a taxpayer, you will benefit from the $17.4M a year reduction in printing and mailing costs.
You can find more information about how to enrol for direct deposit at www.directdeposit.gc.ca.