This week, the Employment Development Department announced a new debit card program for those receiving Disability Insurance (DI) and Paid Family Leave (PFL) benefits. Replacing checks, the electronic card will improve efficiencies, security and cut the wait time for recipients to access their benefits. Approximately 400,000 customers will be transitioned to the new cards by March.

EDD estimates the new program will initially save about $4 million a year in paper and check processing costs once the Unemployment Insurance (UI) program is also transitioned to the new EDD Debit Cards. EDD plans to start phasing in cards for approximately 1.3 million unemployment claimants in June.

Savings are expected to increase significantly once the unemployment Continued Claim Form also goes fully paperless with system modifications expected to be completed next year.

Read EDD’s press release here.