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BANGKOK 19 May 2019 15:19
hereforgood

From the US Embassy website Today April 18th

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Posted (edited)
10 minutes ago, ubonjoe said:
You could of written what it was about in your title and text.
Quote
The United States Department of the Treasury now offers direct deposit of federal benefit payments, including Social Security Administration (SSA), Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), and Office of Personnel Management (OPM), to banks in Thailand.  

But it still lacks a lot of info about which Thai banks are going to accept them and whether it will need to be a special direct deposit account.
Yes I could have but based on the fact the link says Federal benefit payments I figured that would cover it. I can't imagine many banks not accepting it after all it's monthly deposit into their facilities I would think it would be a big plus to them. But I've been wrong before too many times to count.

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Edited by hereforgood
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Looks like the Department of Defense has decided not to participate...

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Well, I've just emailed the Manila SS Office asking if the IDD for Thailand has finally went operational.  In an early reply from the Manila SS Office where I asked the same question it was a "No, still in the testing phase."

 

And like others have already mentioned no details in the announcement about if all or some Thai banks are participating, what if any restrictions/special rules might apply, etc. 

 

And good ol' DFAS for military retirement is still not allowing IDD for Thailand.....each govt agency makes it own determination. 

 

Also, I'm  pretty sure DFAS uses the Federal Reserve Bank of New York for its payments where SSA, VA, and OPM use the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City.....this may be a factor in DFAS not adding Thailand to it's IDD list.

 

 

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Posted (edited)

If emailing Manila SS Office (which I just did but to a specific rep and not their general email address) you may get an automated response like below saying out of office due to holidays till 22 April/Monday.

 

Quote

I am currently out of the office on April 18 and 19, 2019 in observance of Maundy Thursday and Good Friday. Regular Operations will resume on  April 22, 2019.

 

 

Edited by Pib

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7 minutes ago, johnycash777 said:

If they're doing it in baht I'd rather stick with my monthly wire transfers.


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Why?  The wholesale exchange rate used by the US Treasury will surely be better than the Thai bank TT Buying Rate used for incoming transfers....plus, the receiving fee may be lower.

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Keep in mind once SSA IDD for Thailand goes operational (and hopefully it just has since the US Embassy-Bangkok made the 18 Apr 19 announcement which implied IDD) that you will need to have your foreign address (i.e., Thailand address) on-file with SSA, otherwise, you will not be able to signup for IDD direct deposit.

 

This means means your payment would remain in the ACH "domestic" format which may eventually be rejected by Bangkok Bank especially since SS beneficiaries can have their benefit transmitted in both IDD and ACH IAT format as long as you have your Thailand address on file with SSA.  Some of you use your US address for whatever reason(s)...like maybe to avoid the annual "are you dead or alive" letter from SSA.

 

Below weblink provides the SSA policy/instructions for Thailand IDD.  It does not give the details like we're are looking for right now like which Thai banks are participating, etc., "but it provides the SSA representative instructions on how to enroll a beneficiary.....what is allowed and what is not."   I've also cut-and-pasted a few key paragraphs from the policy/instructions. 

https://secure.ssa.gov/poms.nsf/lnx/0202402419

 

image.png.3bb44ea3afb9e871e911efcac562e9c5.png

image.png.40a58ed15fb54d6ea4f597c890871829.png

 

MBR=Master Benefit Record which is your electronic record with SSA.

image.png.6abc57db172cad44defb2549846ecdea.png

 

 

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48 minutes ago, marcusarelus said:

Do you still have to withdraw in person? 

That is unknown at this time.

I don't plan on changing my dependable SS direct deposit in USD to my Bangkok Bank account via New York. I know it is in the IAT format already.

Once IDD is proven to work I might change unless the exchange rate done in the states is not good.

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16 hours ago, hereforgood said:

Yes I could have but based on the fact the link says Federal benefit payments I figured that would cover it. I can't imagine many banks not accepting it after all it's monthly deposit into their facilities I would think it would be a big plus to them. But I've been wrong before too many times to count.

 

It's always a good idea to quote the relevant sections of a website link (in case it goes down, is changed etc).  StackExchange recommends the same for people who post there.

 

----

 

13 hours ago, ubonjoe said:

That is unknown at this time.

I don't plan on changing my dependable SS direct deposit in USD to my Bangkok Bank account via New York. I know it is in the IAT format already.

Once IDD is proven to work I might change unless the exchange rate done in the states is not good.

 

Is there any reason why any of you do not just use a USA-based account and then withdraw via ATM, ACH transfer to BkB New York, TransferWise, Swift wire transfer, etc?  I would think this would be more ironclad, with immediate access to your money.

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13 hours ago, ubonjoe said:

That is unknown at this time.

I don't plan on changing my dependable SS direct deposit in USD to my Bangkok Bank account via New York. I know it is in the IAT format already.

Once IDD is proven to work I might change unless the exchange rate done in the states is not good.

If it ain't broke don't 'fix' is my motto as well. The monthly DD SS deposit to my Bangkok Bank account is working fine. 

The damn Patriot Act needs to be modified to allow DD funds from pensions and annuities though. 

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14 minutes ago, 4evermaat said:

Is there any reason why any of you do not just use a USA-based account and then withdraw via ATM, ACH transfer to BkB New York, TransferWise, Swift wire transfer, etc?  I would think this would be more ironclad, with immediate access to your money.

Different folks will have different reasons.   

 

- ATMs usually come with withdrawal fees on the ATM-end and the card-issuing home country bank end....like the typical Thai bank ATM Bt220 fee and numerous US cards carry up to 3% foreign transaction fees.  Yes, there are cards out there like the Schwab debit card that reimburses/does not charge fees but everyone does not have such cards (in fact such cards are in the minority of cards)...and maybe can't open such an account because they have dropped many connections with the home country.   Plus if using the immigration monthly income method you will not receive "international coding" for any withdrawal you make at  an ATM or counter like when transferring the funds to Thailand using some transfer methods/services.

 

- The Bangkok Bank ACH via the New York branch will reject "non-IAT" transfers sometime in the near future....they are already in an extension beyond their originally announced 1 Apr 19 date....probably to give more time to US govt pensioners to switch to IDD, figure out another way to send fund over in ACH IAT format or Wire format.  Still haven't seen any person prove their US bank will use ACH "IAT" format for a transfer.  US banks instead use ACH "domestic" format or pricey Wire format.  And sending a Wire from some US banks is not a simple process....might require a phone call/fax to them each time.   

 

- And using money transfer services come with their own potential problems like your account being cancelled/suspended out of the blue, fees, and the bank coding may not meet immigration monthly income documentation/coding requirements.  Yes you might be able to work a "tagging" setup with your money transfer service if you are with certain Thai banks. 

 

Nothing ironclad in using any money transfer method...be in your home country bank or money transfer service....and they all come with some type of fee(s)....some worst or better than other.

 

Plus, it's really hard to beat the US govt simply transmitting your benefit into your Thai bank each month....you do not have to do anything---pure simplicity....the money just arrives your Thai bank account without needing to do anything each month.  Don't have to be concerned with using your US bank (if you even still have a US bank account) to transfer the funds....or using your money transfer service to pull/push money from your US bank account (if you still have one) and then transfer those funds.  Additionally, there are a LOT of beneficiaries in Thailand who are challenged in using ibanking/money transfer services due to age, education, desire, etc., such as Thai spouses (or even farangs) who receive such funds....Thai spouses who still live in the "passbook seems challenging" to them age....and electronic banking just causes their eyes to glaze over.  There is a lot to be said for simplicity.

 

The IDD for Thailand should indeed be good barring fine print surprises. A person is going to get a US Treasury "wholesale rate" which is another way of saying a rate very close to the mid-market/interbank rate....the US Treasury is covering all fees "except the possibility of a Thai receiving fee.  Hopefully the account you send it to will have few or no restrictions and maybe can even be a joint account, come with debit card, ibanking, have the account at any Thai bank, etc. 

 

But we'll have to wait and see what restrictions, if any, come in using IDD.  My gut tells me over the coming month we are finally going to find out the details of using IDD...with the details we are missing now being those of relating to the Thai bank end.  

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