Non-customers of five major banks in Illinois can now cash their stimulus checks for free, according to Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker.
On Friday the Illinois Department of Professional and Financial Regulation announced partnerships with Wells Fargo, JP Morgan Chase, US Bank, Fifth Third and First Midwest Bank where non-customers can go to cask their checks without paying a fee.
The government in April began sending $1,200 for each individual, $2,400 for each married couple and another $500 for each dependent child to poor and middle-class families across the United States. Wealthier families get either a reduced payout or nothing depending on their income.
During Sunday’s daily coronavirus briefing, Pritzker said one in five Illinois households are unbanked and many have and will receive paper checks.
“I want everyone who’s receiving a check to get it’s full value,” Pritzker said at Sunday’s daily coronavirus briefing. “So seek out these partner institutions to cash your check because they will not charge you any fees.”
Typically, non-customers are subject to a check-cashing fee which varies from bank to bank while the same services at check cashing stores tend to charge up to a 3% fee. Some companies like PayPal are temporarily waiving its check cashing fee on checks $5,000 or less.
Pritzker said the state is cracking down on those using the COVID-19 pandemic to frame scams and urged residents to contact law enforcement to report any wrongdoing.
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“Reprehensible bad actors continue to use this public health emergency to prey on others,” Pritzker said. “The attorney general will not hesitate to use the authority of his office in partnership with state, local and federal law enforcement to hold account anyone seeking to profit off this pandemic. To the scam artists- you will be caught and you will be prosecuted.”