Postcard account closures have been extended until November 2022, but here’s what the DWP says customers should do now


The closure of postcard accounts has been delayed.

Clients who receive state pension or benefits through card accounts are given another year to make other arrangements for their money after the Department of Work and Pensions makes the decision to postpone the shutdown 12 months due to the disruption caused by the pandemic.

Hundreds of thousands of people still receive pensions and benefits on Swiss Post accounts

It is still believed that hundreds of thousands of people get their money back using a postcard account (POca) instead of a bank account. Here’s what those affected will need to do now:

Who uses a POca?

People who receive either a state pension or some form of allowance can still receive this money through a postcard account. However, the DWP made the decision to stop paying state financial support to these types of accounts, a move that was initially expected to affect nearly a million people when it was first announced.

Accounts were due to close in November, but after so much disruption caused by Covid-19, that closure has been pushed back for a year, giving people more time to make other arrangements for their money.

Government figures suggest that at the start of January, more than 590,000 people were using active postal accounts. By July, that number had fallen to 382,000, but that means many still haven’t found other accounts to pour their money into.

The Ministry of Work and Pensions postponed the closure of postcard accounts
The Ministry of Work and Pensions postponed the closure of postcard accounts

And now?

The DWP writes to all customers who receive payments in a POca to remind them that the service ends, albeit now at a later date, and to encourage them to begin the process of switching to a traditional bank account before any payment is made. the post office. card accounts end up shutting down next fall.

The most vulnerable customers who cannot access banking services, for example people with very bad credit history, will be transferred to what is called the payment exception service which will allow users to choose how they recover. now their money.

Pensions Minister Guy Opperman explained: “While the vast majority of pensions and benefits are paid directly into personal bank accounts, some people prefer to collect their payments over the counter at their local post office.

“This extra time means we can help our most vulnerable customers switch to the payment method that’s best for them. “

DWP says it now has more time to ensure vulnerable people have other arrangements in place
DWP says it now has more time to ensure vulnerable people have other arrangements in place

What is the payment exception service?

Customers claiming some form of government support who cannot transfer to a bank account will be offered access to the new payment exception service as a way to withdraw their money.

This will involve withdrawing payments using unique codes and information sent either by SMS, email or barcode sent to mobile phones.

In addition, all customers who have switched from a postal account to the new service will receive a reusable magnetic stripe plastic card, which can be used to collect their cash benefits at over 28,000 PayPoint outlets or 11,500 branches. post office.

Checks will be made when customers are transferred to the payment exception service to make sure the vouchers are cashed and people have a clear idea of ​​how to get their money, the DWP says.

Retirees and recipients of state benefits will need to transfer to a bank account or use the new payment exception service
Retirees and recipients of state benefits will need to transfer to a bank account or use the new payment exception service

Where to go if you need more help …

Those who need to provide officials with new bank details should contact the HMRC hotlines (0345 300 3900 for tax credits or 0300 200 3100 for family allowances) or use your personal tax account to provide further details. account for where your money is to be sent.

The government advises anyone who needs help opening a bank account to visit their local citizen advice service for further assistance.

Click on here for more details on the payment exception service.

Read more: All the latest news from Kent


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