The federal government has concluded that electronic payments are not simply the best way to receive Government money; rather, they will soon be the only way. The U.S. Department of the Treasury has a new rule phasing out paper checks for Federal benefits and nontax payments by March 1, 2013. Moreover, effective May 1, 2011, all new recipients of Federal benefits including those filing for Supplemental Security Income and/or Disability Insurance Benefits must receive their payments electronically unless they meet one of the very limited expectations. It is thought that electronic payments are safer, easier, more reliable, less costly and above all green (good for the environment). If you or anyone you know is still receiving checks in the mail, they should visit their local Social Security office or go to www.godirect.org to sign up for direct deposit or Direct Express.