How to cash your 2020 stimulus check without paying fees if you don't have a bank account

CHICAGO (WLS) -- Help is now available people without bank accounts when they cash their stimulus checks. The state of Illinois is taking action, working with a number banks to help those who want to collect all of their stimulus checks and avoid fees if they don't have a bank account.

"This is a way to provide free services so some of the most vulnerable people in our society get every dime of that check," said Chasse Rehwinkel, Acting Director of Banking Illinois Department of Professional and Financial Regulations.

Numerous banks will offer non-customers the opportunity to cash their stimulus checks so they can avoid paying fees. IDPFR reached out to banks to help people get 100% of their money so they can spend it on essentials, like food.

The federal government estimates 22% of Illinois households don't have bank accounts. Those folks could pay 1.5 % fee per check, if they have a $1,200 check.

"A lot of the people who are receiving the checks are on the lower income scale here in Illinois so every dollar has a major impact to their household income," said Rehwinkel.

Some of the participating banks are Wells Fargo, Fifth Third, First Midwest, U.S. Banks and JP Morgan Chase.

To cash your check you must bring proper identification, make an appointment with the bank to ensure social distancing. Or you can email the state to make an appointment.

A handful of non-profit groups also launched a website to help people manage the stimulus money and open up affordable bank accounts.

To cash a check at a bank and avoid fees, if you don't have a bank account, email to set up an appointment.

Nonprofits can help people access their stimulus payment and acquire affordable banking at
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