June 13, 2020

At Least One Greek Bank will Deposit Your US CARES Check

And the good news is ….

At Least One Greek Bank Will Deposit Your US EIP Check

One Member's Experience!

We’ve heard a few success stories concerning the Economic Impact Payment of $1200(CARES Act), but questions continue to come in. Today, we move a step ahead … one check in the mail, deposited successfully.

When my EIP check arrived, I called my bank’s main Customer Service number and asked questions. I was lucky that day to be put through to the colleague who ‘would know the most about it.’ He explained the bank was dealing with myriad new routines, rules, etc. in light of our virus-driven work-arounds.

 But as it turned out, the information he gave me held true.

1.       Yes, the bank will deposit the US gov’t check in a dollar account.
(You’d have to ask further questions if you only have a euro account)
2.       The deposit must be made in-person during lobby hours.
3.       The deposit must be made at the bank branch where your account is registered.

After the check had self-quarantined for a few days, i.e. when I was ready to go out to the branch, I got in touch with the branch personnel and made sure they knew about the rules Customer Service had shared. I also asked about busy hours, best time to visit, etc.

When I arrived at the bank branch today, the ‘banking lobby’ manager greeted me with a smile and she recognized my voice from the phone call yesterday! This may be the upside of an economic slow-down.

The teller was also friendly and helpful. The lobby was serving 2 or 3 customers, max, in a large space. No lines outside. Most personnel were either wearing masks or working behind plastic/glass dividers. I was in and out in less than 15 minutes.

A lot of people have been wondering if/when their EIP will arrive or be deposited in a US bank account. As a Social Security beneficiary, I had expected mine to go to the account where my SS benefit goes every month. 

I did not file any additional information with IRS. I had filed my 1040 returns, using my Greek address. I got Social Security by direct-deposit in a stateside bank account. There were no boxes I could tick on the IRS site to “add info here.”

But I kept checking my US account online to see if it had arrived. And then the check came to Greece by mail. This took a bit longer than an electronic deposit should have and it must have cost ‘taxpayers’ more to print and mail a few million hard-copy checks. You get the impression that someone at IRS said, “Keep it simple. Just mail them all to the address on the return.” I could be wrong.

That’s the long and short of it. Contrary to what Aunt Clara may have advised, you do not have to fly back to the US to cash the EIP check. But you may encounter other issues here, even if you bank where I do.

The best advice is call your bank and ask if and how they will handle it.

And then, if you run into any snags, be sure to let DAGR know. Dems Abroad is keeping a close eye on this as well as on registration and voting difficulties and may be able to help.

PS – If you don’t desperately need the whole EIP check, consider donating a small portion to DAGR. We do desperately need it to keep the lights on (and the Eforia happy) so we can concentrate on the elections at hand … and send the grifters packing in November!

Experienced and Submitted by Karen Lee
DAGR Fund Raising Committee