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Press Release
Child Support Recipients Have More Opportunities to Avoid Bank Fees
Bank ATMs Providing Free Transactions Have Increased Fourfold Statewide

April 22, 2009

The Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance (OTDA) and the New York State Banking Department today announced that the network of bank ATMs providing free transactions to child support recipients has more than quadrupled since the beginning of the year.

There are now more than 3,100 sites throughout New York State, up from about 700 earlier this year, where child support recipients can access their funds without having to pay fees and surcharges imposed by banks outside of the network. Custodial parents who do not enroll in direct deposit receive their child support payments through a debit card.

“We are pleased that child support recipients now have more opportunities to avoid paying unnecessary fees to access their money,” said OTDA Commissioner David A. Hansell, whose agency manages the State’s child support program. “Saving even a few dollars a month can add up for these families over time. This is yet another example of the type of public/private partnership that Governor Paterson has said we need to get through the current economic crisis in our State.”

“Financial institutions play an important role in supporting economic stability for working families through innovative banking choice,” said Richard H. Neiman, New York State Superintendent of Banks. “The waiver of this fee will make a real difference in the budgets of many New Yorkers, especially in these difficult economic times. We are also interested in facilitating financial education and other services to help families keep and grow the dollars they save.”

“Every dollar counts when you're working hard to support a family in a difficult economic climate,” said State Senator Daniel Squadron, vice chair of the Committee on Social Services. “I commend Commissioner Hansell and the participating banks for working together to provide this valuable service to families that can truly use it.”

Child support payments are automatically loaded onto the EPPICard, a MasterCard debit card, which can be used at any ATM displaying the MasterCard or Cirrus logos. New York child support recipients get two free withdrawals each month, and avoid ATM surcharges, by using the card at Wachovia, Citizen's Bank, 7-Eleven, and Alliance One bank ATM's within the State of New York. The cards can also be used to make purchases, and receive cash back with no additional fees, at many retailers, including grocery stores displaying the MasterCard Acceptance Mark.

Contact: Michael Hayes, Anthony Farmer

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