New Veterans Benefits Banking Program
The New Veterans Benefits Banking Program Detailed
As of December 20, 2019, the VA has a new program to help veterans receive better access to banking. Through the Veterans Benefits Banking Program (VBBP), the Department of Veterans Affairs and the Association of Military Banks of America (AMBA) are working to offer veterans and service members safe, reliable, and inexpensive ways to receive and manage their VA monetary benefits through banking institutions. These banking institutions will specialize in services for military personnel, veterans, and their families through federally-insured financial products, services, and education.
According to the VA, approximately 250,000 veterans and beneficiaries receive their benefits through a pre-paid debit card or paper check, and might not even have a bank account. There is definitely room for this program to help veterans open a bank account and start to receive their benefits through direct deposit instead.
Veterans need to have a bank that knows about the needs and challenges of the service members and veterans. That way, they can ask questions, and get the right answers from people who understand the veteran lifestyle and needs.
Where are these banks located?
Some of the participating banks have branches on military installations or outside the gate of military installations.
How many banks are participating?
At this time, 7 banks are participating. They are:
- Armed Forces Bank
- Bank of America
- First Arkansas Bank & Trust
- Fort Hood National Bank
- FSNB (formerly Fort Sill National Bank)
- Regions Bank
- Wells Fargo
Who can participate in this new program?
Veterans and beneficiaries that receive benefits can participate.
Why the AMBA?
The AMBA is the only trade association that represents banking institutions specializing in providing banking services for military personnel, veterans, and their families around the world.
How do you apply for a bank account through this program?
You would go to their website and look for a bank. Each bank has a different application process.
What is the main goal of AMBA with this program?
The AMBA is not a bank but they can help veterans understand the benefits of banking, as well as helping banks understand the unique financial challenges veterans routinely encounter.
This new program can be a great way to help veterans with their banking needs.
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About the author
Julie Provost is a freelance writer, blogger, and owner of Soldier's Wife, Crazy Life, a support blog for military spouses. She lives in Tennessee with her National Guard husband and three boys.