Illinois League Backs Debit Card for Teens
In a bid to capture more of the prepaid debit card market, the Illinois Credit Union League is rolling out a new "family card" designed for teens as a money management tool.
The league's ICUL Service Corp subsidiary said the new card, which will be available Feb. 28, contains a raft of parental and sponsor controls on withdrawal limits and usage.
League officials said the card is a unique financial education product for teens 13-16 and "designed for credit union members to teach their children about how accounts work."
The product "provides a child a plastic card funded by an adult caregiver with oversight and responsible restrictions built in is an effective way to train them to become responsible consumers," said George Fiegle, chief operating officer of ICUL Service.
The family card serves to help CUs "fulfill their social mission as well as being a product that will be attractive to members," he added.
In its application, parents or grandparents can add money to the family card, but the user-teen is not allowed to add his or her own funds.
"The cardholder can use the family card the same as any other prepaid debit card," said the league, noting, however, that "the cardholder has no ability to add money to the card but can view transaction and statement information and report the card lost or stolen."
ICUL said the cards can be offered through Visa, Plus, Co-Op or Pulse networks with programs containing consumer, text and e-mail alert options plus personalized design.
"Prepaid debit has been the fastest growing form of payments the last few years and it just seemed to be a natural evolution to add to our other prepaid debit line," said Fiegle. ICUL said it has more than 2,600 CUs as participants on prepaids, "making us the leading provider of prepaid debit products" to the industry.