AUSTIN — The Texas Workforce Commission announced Tuesday the statewide launch of unemployment insurance debit cards to replace traditional paper UI checks.

TWC has partnered with JPMorgan Chase, the state’s largest bank, for the conversion to the TWC UI Debit Card, offering more secure, convenient and fast access to UI funds for unemployed Texas workers.

“With the new UI debit cards, TWC continues to streamline the unemployment insurance process,” said Diane Rath, TWC chair and commissioner representing the public. “UI benefits will arrive faster and safer than ever before, making work search and that all-important new job the main focus.”

TWC UI Debit Cards can be used for purchases and to receive cash back. The cards can be used at any merchant that accepts Visa, and cash can be obtained from automated teller machines and at Visa-member banks and credit unions in Texas.

Once the claimants receive and activate their debit cards, their cash benefits will be automatically deposited to the debit card account each payment period, eliminating mail delays and claimant costs associated with cashing, and/or depositing traditional paper checks.

“Texas employers continue to add jobs at a record pace, helping UI claimants re-enter the workforce quickly,” said Ron Lehman, TWC commissioner representing employers. “The upgrade from traditional paper checks to debit cards adds to the efficiency of the UI process.”

Claimants can call Chase toll-free at (866) 865-1273 with any questions about the TWC UI Debit Card or to check the status of their accounts. Online account statements are available at www.myaccount.chase.com. For questions about benefits, cardholders may visit the TWC Web site at www.texasworkforce.org or contact the TWC UI Tele-Center office at (800)-939-6631.

“Unemployed Texas workers will find the debit card system fast and secure, so claimants can focus on getting back to work,” said Ronny Congleton, TWC commissioner representing labor. “The days of waiting for the check to come in the mail are over.”