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Stimulus check: If you owe overdraft fees, can the bank take your stimulus payment?

Money went out in different places this week in the form of child tax credits and stimulus checks.

On Monday, Nov. 15 the fifth child tax credit payment went out worth up to $300.

A second round of stimulus checks in California were sent out as well, worth up to $1,100.

Related: Stimulus check: Are you eligible for up to $10,000 in stimulus money?

Will my bank take my stimulus cash if I have unpaid overdraft fees?

Banks can take your stimulus cash to cover overdraft fees.

Whether it will actually happen depends on your bank. When the pandemic started, many banks paused collecting for overdraft fees.

It’s best to contact your bank to find out.

Related: Stimulus check: additional 2.57 million stimulus checks going out this year worth up to $1,100

Both the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency urged people to reach out to their banks if they were affected by the pandemic.

While banks weren’t required to waive fees, the OCC is encouraging to support their customers during hardships caused by the pandemic.

Some ways to avoid over drafting your account include spending less every month. Slowly that fee will drop.

You can also change your due dates of bills to right before payday instead of after, meaning when you do overdraft it won’t be as much money.

Sign up to be notified of low balances.

You can link another bank account or credit card that can cover the overdraft fee if it does happen.

Finally, you could opt out of overdraft fees entirely.

Related: Stimulus check: how to qualify for claim the additional $1,400 stimulus check in 2022

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