Developing Consistent Standards for Quality in the Payroll Card Industry

Posted April 20, 2015, By the Annie E. Casey Foundation

Blog Developing Standardsfor Payroll Card Industry 2015

The Cen­ter for Finan­cial Ser­vices Inno­va­tion (CFSI) recent­ly released Com­pass Guide to Pay­roll Cards, which details indus­try-wide best prac­tices for pay­roll cards. Employ­ers are increas­ing­ly using these reload­able, pre­paid cards as an alter­na­tive to direct-deposit or check pay­ments. In 2013, employ­ers loaded more than $30 bil­lion onto more than 5 mil­lion pay­roll cards, accord­ing to the CFSI report.

Pay­roll cards are par­tic­u­lar­ly impor­tant for work­ers who lack access to high-qual­i­ty, main­stream finan­cial ser­vices such as bank accounts — a real­i­ty for many of America’s low-income fam­i­lies. Deliv­er­ing wages through these cards helps ensure employ­ees get paid prompt­ly and safe­ly, allow­ing them to avoid check-cash­ing fees — and to do every­day activ­i­ties such as shop for gro­ceries or with­draw cash from an ATM so they can sup­port their families.

CFSI’s report pro­vides guide­lines for this grow­ing indus­try to adopt con­sis­tent prac­tices for qual­i­ty pay­roll cards so that work­ers con­tin­ue to have the option of get­ting paid in a vari­ety of ways. Mas­ter­Card and Visa have already com­mit­ted to imple­ment­ing the guide’s rec­om­men­da­tions.

Learn more about the future of pay­roll cards in a webi­nar lat­er this month, fea­tur­ing the report’s author, CFSI’s Thea Garon, and indus­try experts.

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