August 8, 2020

Michigan’s New Unemployment…. Fees

Michigan no longer sends out unemployment checks. The new system sends recipients a debit card. This debit card is a Chase Visa card, and actually shows up on your credit report. I’m not sure what impact it has on people’s credit rating, but I’m sure it’s not good for future credit checkers to see the unemployment card listed there.

Instead of getting a check in the mail, unemployment recipients will receive a debit card that will get updated with money. It sounds more convenient until you get into the specifics and the charges. That’s right, charges!

Firstly, you’ll get 1 card with a 3 year expiration date on it. You’ll be expected to keep this card for the entire 3 years – even if you find employment. If you re-file before your card expires, you can use the same card. If you lose your card though, it’ll cost you $7.50 for a new one.

If you leave money on the card after you’ve found employment, you’ll be charged $1.50 per month until your balance is 0.

In order to find out if you have money on your card and check your balance, you’ll have to go online to the Chase website. If you prefer to have a paper statement sent to you, you can select that option for a small fee of $0.95 per statement.

Getting cash is as simple as putting your card in an ATM machine – but you only get 2 withdrawals per month. Any extra withdrawal will cost you $1.50. Chase ATMs are free, but you’ll have to pay the surcharge anywhere else.

The same goes for bank teller withdrawals. You get 1 free bank teller transaction per month. After that, it will cost you $4.00 plus any bank fees.

If you’re out of the country, you’ll pay $3 plus 3% to withdraw.

Oh, and you can’t use it in a gas pump.

But hey, using it inside to buy cigarettes and lottery tickets doesn’t have a charge!

Forgive me for being old fashioned, but I’d prefer the old paper check in the mail any day. It looks like the only one benefiting from this new system is Chase.

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About Ryan Jones

Ryan Jones is an SEO from Detroit. By day he works as a manager of SEO & Analytics at SapientNitro where his team performs SEO for Fortune500 clients. By night he's either playing hockey or attempting to take over the world with his own websites - which he would have already succeeded in doing had it not been for those meddling kids and their dog. The views expressed here have not been paid for and belong only to Ryan, not any of his employers or clients. Follow Ryan on Twitter at: @RyanJones, add him on Google+ or visit his personal website: www.RyanMJones.com

Comments

  1. The economy has definetly softened but I still see thousands of jobs posted on employment sites.

    http://www.linkedin.com (networking)
    http://www.indeed.com (aggregated listings)
    http://www.realmatch.com (matches you to jobs)

    good luck to those searching for jobs.

  2. Yea – if you even recieve it. My gf never recieved her most recent payment, the first one to be put on on the card. She has been calling unemployment all day but only getting a busy signal. Real nice when we’re living paycheck to paycheck and then we dont recieved $550 we expected to pay for groceries.

  3. You’re getting it on the card? Most people I know are getting checks still – despite the card.

  4. I actually really like this approach. It is fast and easy. I also linked my card with my other chase visa so I get the rewards points on it when I use it as credit.

    This is the first time I have ever been on unemployment and aside from marvin being really busy on your appointment time to call in, I have no complaints. (the makeup days, thurs and fri are easy to get through on and it only delays your deposit by 1 or 2 days.)

    Also maybe no one has thought of this, but you have to have a credit card for lots of things (on-line, car rental, etc etc). Consider that many people now on unemployment have completely screwed credit, so they may not even have a credit card!!!!! (I dont and I cant be that unique), so having this debit/visa card could be a godsend for many.

    Also, to cash a check you need to have an account at the bank your cashing it at usually. If joe blow walks into whatever bank the unemployment check is drawn from I can basically guarantee he is going to be charged some sort of fee to cash it.

    I am sure I can come up with some other benefits. And the 2 free atm uses a period, well that should be plenty, if you want cash, just withdraw it all, the $500 limit does not apply, you can pull out the whole amount if you want in one ATM transaction.

    If you dont want the to know what you spend you money on, heck just pull cash out and use cash.

    As far as the gas station, you have to pay inside because otherwise people could fill up when the card gets the $1 auth check and leave the gas station holding the bag if they didnt have enough to cover the end cost in the account.

  5. how did u actually get unemployment debit card to work. son cant seem to get anything out or transfer to bank account. tried banks and atm. ? atm not giving him money so now he cant pay his bills. cant get a phone call thru to unemployment

  6. You have to actually call into marvin to report every 2 weeks. It then tells you your funds will be available on a particular date. It is one (1) day off. Your funds will go in on the day after it tells you. (or the last second of the day it tells you, lol) Anyhow, there is a toll free number on the back of the debit card that you call, enter your card number and pin and it tells you your available balance.

    I think you select your pin when you activate the card. You have to activate it following the instructions on the sticker like any other card. Dont just peal the bright red sticker off, follow the instructions!!!!! You can also check your available balance and review transactions via http://www.myaccount.chase.com It is really slick and works well.

    The important part is activating your card, remembering your PIN and calling into MARVIN at your scheduled time (redial is your friend if its busy which it will be continuously, you want your money, just keep redialing, you will get through in the hour thats reserved for you.)

    Honestly, he probably is just saying he didnt get his money because A) he owes you for what you have loaned him or B) he is on drugs and used it for them… lol…. seriously.

  7. Ryan, Glad the card is working for you, but HONESTLY, that is NOT the case for many other people — Having not been able to get through on the inquiry line for days, last Friday I went directly to Livonia office, waited for approx. 3 hrs — lots of talking w/ folks in line and come to find out, many were there because of problems with the cards — cards weren’t getting loaded at all or balance stated $0 balance despite several weeks of properly called claim weeks or missing $$ (partial amounts) versus what MARVIN had told them and they couldn’t get the situation resolved over the phone even when they could get through on the inquiry line. I hope that the majority are working with the cards just fine, but the system is not without flaws.

    But, Ryan, Seriously, not funny – You don’t need to be insulting.

    It would not be unusual for a new system to need to work out some bugs, and I’m sure at this point it is being taxed as never before, but that is no comfort to those decent honest people who are doing their best to manage (pay)check to (pay)check esp. without having an advocate assigned to them yet to help straigten out the mess. Their bill collectors don’t care why the bill’s not paid.

  8. Just want to clarify that the Ryan in the comments above isn’t the Ryan who wrote the article 🙂

    I should really look into a mod that makes my comments a different color.

  9. Sorry, didnt mean for the comment to come accross that way (insulting).

    I guess I have just been really lucky then, sorry to any who read my comment and felt slighted/judged/insulted, I was just poking a little fun.

    And yes, the system is taxed, during my appointment time for MARVIN I probably have to dial about 50-100 times to get through, but thats what you have to do, there are only so many lines going in. You will get through. So many people try for 10 minutes then wait 20 and try again for 10…. you cant do that, you have to sit there and just peg it, I dial off my cell and a land line until I get through. The whole process takes about 5 minutes so you can bet a line will open every 5 minutes and chances are that a few open every 5 minutes like clockwork.

    When people dont get what they are expecting it is because of court ordered deductions. I am sure that there are exceptions where the system is actualy at fault, there are always bugs, but I have yet to talk to someone who was completely innocent and just had bad luck with a “new” technology. Most of the time the employer is disputing it or whatever thats why you need an “advocate”, to fight for your rights I guess.

    Again, sorry if I upset anyone, especially you “jqsh”, damn blog software cant even spell your name right!!!!! 😉