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Direct Express


The DirectExpress® Debit MasterCard® card is a way to get your federal benefits, even if you do not have a bank account.

Federal benefit payments, such as Social Security, Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and Veterans, are required to receive your payment electronically. You must either have the money deposited directly to a bank or credit union account or get your money each month on a DirectExpress® prepaid debit card.

Even if you have a bank account, you may prefer to get your federal benefits on the Direct Express® card. No need to cash a check or carry cash. No credit check to get the card. No need to keep a minimum balance on the card.

Visit the Direct Express site

Treasury Seeks Direct Express® Debit Card Services

* * * NOTICE OF DEADLINE EXTENSION: The deadline for submitting applications to provide Direct Express® debit card services has been extended. The new deadline is March 8, 2019 (5:00pm ET). The deadline for submitting questions regarding the application submission process has also been extended. The new deadline for submitting questions is February 15, 2019. * * *

The U.S. Department of the Treasury, Bureau of the Fiscal Service, seeks applications from qualified financial institutions to serve as a Financial Agent of the United States. The selected Financial Agent(s) will provide Direct Express® debit card services nationwide to recipients of Social Security and other Federal benefit payments, beginning in January 2020. Applications must be received no later than 5:00 pm ET March 8, 2019.

View the Requirements for Applications to Provide Prepaid Debit Card Services and read the press release.

Any questions regarding the application process must be submitted to the Fiscal Service via e-mail at no later than February 15, 2019. View Questions and Answers. (Updated 05/22/2019)

How does the DirectExpress® Card work?

Each month, your money is automatically deposited to your Direct Express® card account on your payment date. You can go to any bank, credit union, or ATM that shows the MasterCard® logo, even if you do not have a bank account.

  • buy from any place that accepts debit card payments
  • get cash from any ATM, bank, or credit union that shows the MasterCard® logo
  • pay your bills online or over the phone

How Do I Get My Direct Express Card?

Contact our Enrollment Center between the hours of 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Easter Time, Monday thru Friday.

Call 800-333-1795 or enroll online at

Benefits of the Direct Express card

No need to have a bank account or carry cash

You get your money on time, every month

No need to worry about checks

Safe & Secure

The Direct Express Card is very safe.

  • The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) insures your money up to the maximum that the law allows.
  • You get a Personal Identification Number (PIN) that you use at ATMs, online, and in stores.
  • You choose the PIN when you activate your card. Your PIN is a four-digit number that you enter on the keypad at ATMs and retail locations when you use your card.
  • If your card is lost or stolen, it will be replaced by Direct Express customer service

No Cost and No Fees

For most of the ways you will use the card, there are no fees.

  • No cost to sign up
  • No monthly fees or overdraft fees
  • No fee to use the card wherever MasterCard® is accepted
  • No fee to get extra cash back with purchases
  • No fee to get cash from a bank or credit union
  • One free ATM cash withdrawal for each deposit posted to your card account each month. (If you use an ATM that is not part of the Direct Express® network, the bank or credit union that owns that ATM may charge a fee.)

Even More Benefits

You also get these services for free:

  • Find out how much money you have left on your card
  • Get a message when money is deposited to your card
  • Get a message when your balance falls below a certain amount
  • Get help whenever you need it by phone or online
  • Download the DX Mobile App for free

A few other services you may choose to use with your card do have small fees. For information about these other services and what they cost, visit Direct Express FAQs.

Also, see our information brochure.

Contact Direct Express

For any questions about or problem with your Direct Express® card, contact Direct Express® Customer Service at the number on the back of your card or at

If you have a general comment about the DirectExpress® card program, you may write to us at

Note: Do not use this e-mail address to discuss your specific card. At the Department of the Treasury, we do not keep or have access to any information about your specific card.

DirectExpress® and the DirectExpress® logo are registered marks of the U.S. Department of the Treasury, Bureau of the Fiscal Service.

The Comerica Bank issues the DirectExpress® Debit MasterCard® under a license from MasterCard International Incorporated. MasterCard® and the MasterCard® Brand Mark are registered trademarks of MasterCard International Incorporated.

Last modified 05/22/19