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3 questions to ask about payroll cards

Debit Cards » Best Prepaid Debit Cards » 3 Questions To Ask About Payroll Cards

Can I keep track of the card and its costs?
Can I keep track of the card and its costs? © GVictoria/Shutterstock.com

Because these cards function like debit cards, you'll need a PIN to get cash from an ATM, which offers some protection from theft, American Payroll Association's Dunn says. Still, a stolen card might be used for purchases, he says.

Federal rules mandate that workers have limited liability from fraudulent use of their cards.

Collins advises workers to look to the instructions on the card for reporting lost or stolen cards. Timely reporting may mean you're not responsible for fraudulent charges, he says. However, there can be a fee to reissue a new card.

Also, once the earnings on a payroll card are exhausted, purchases can't be made. To keep track, you typically can check online or over the phone for balance information, Dunn says. Workers need to remember that they'll need to have cash or a credit card ready if they're making a purchase and their payroll card balance is low.

However, some cards may allow you to opt in for overdraft protection, but you'll pay a fee, Dunn says.

Visa's Chittaro points out that payroll cards could be as costly as checking for those who don't keep a big balance and use overdrafts. "As an industry, we don't like to see (overdraft protection)," he says.

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