Alberta.ca » Income and Employment Supports Policy Manual


Learner Policy & Procedures

Published Date: January 29, 2016
Bookmark this page

Financial Benefits Decision

Direct Deposit

INTENT

To ensure the Direct Deposit payment method is used appropriately.

POLICY

The direct deposit method of payment is preferred for Income Support (IS) learners, because it:
  • Is less costly and more efficient resulting in increased savings to taxpayers in administrative costs and fewer phone calls to workers;
  • Provides cost saving to learners (who may otherwise pay fees at cheque cashing agencies).
Note
Learner IS benefits deposited in a bank account that are not or have never been intermingled with other funds (i.e., a stand-alone bank account where no other funds are deposited except for IS benefits), cannot be garnisheed under the Civil Enforcement Act. This does not apply to garnishee orders legislated under other Acts. Learners with garnishee orders should be advised to discuss their situation with the creditor.

A Direct Deposit form already on the file can be used for subsequent training periods unless the learner confirms the information needs to be changed.

A learner may change their method of payment between cheque and Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT) and/or provide updated EFT information as necessary.

Out of Province Bank Accounts
Out of province accounts are accepted for learners.

Direct Deposit Registration
A Direct Deposit Registration form is provided to learners as part of the application package. A bank version of a Direct Deposit form is acceptable if it includes the name of the learner, their bank information, and a signed declaration from the client authorizing the department to deposit payments into the bank account provided. If the bank form does not have a declaration the client can attach a Direct Deposit Registration form with section “A” completed and the declaration signed.

Learners should have one of these forms completed by the bank before submitting their application.

Approving Direct Deposit bank information is a two level process. The information is entered into the system and then forwarded to the next level for verification.

Bank Rejection Report
Within two to five working days a Bank Rejection Query is initiated if the bank cannot locate the account number that has been sent electronically. IMAGIS will get the funds back and IMAGIS will reissue the payment by cheque.

When LISO receives the Bank Rejection Query, the payment type on the learner’s Mobius home page and Production Delivery Case (PDC) is changed to "cheque" and the learner’s on-going benefits are issued by cheque unless/until updated Direct Deposit information is provided. 

Traces
If a learner indicates that a Direct Deposit was not deposited into their account, a trace can be requested to determine where the money was deposited. It takes the bank approximately five working days to process a trace request.


To request a trace, LISO completes the Direct Deposit Recall/Trace Request form and submits this form to IBM.