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COVID-19 Resources

Updated August 3, 2020

Table of Contents

Federal Reserve Financial Services is committed to maintaining a high level of preparedness to meet the needs of financial institutions for a range of scenarios, including those relevant to the recent public health emergency caused by the coronavirus (COVID-19). We want to reassure you that our services are fully operational and we do not anticipate any business disruptions. Customers should continue to follow their normal procedures for contacting the Federal Reserve Banks.

Access to our services

Last updated 5/7/20

Federal Reserve Financial Services customers maintain critical responsibilities and obligations for business resiliency and business continuity for the services that they use. Customers should refer to their institution’s business continuity plans as early as possible to ensure user access.

All equipment, including personal computers, used to access those Federal Reserve Bank Services that can be accessed outside of an individual's normal working environment via FedLine® Solutions must comply with published Hardware and Software Requirements. Information for accessing FedLine Web® and FedLine Advantage® remotely is available. Credentialed EUACs and Subscribers can access further detailed instructions via FedLine Home Communications. Individuals with questions or concerns about accessing these services outside their normal working environment should contact the Customer Contact Center, which can advise on any potential modifications required in their setup to be able to connect to our services.

Reporting Central Subscribers are encouraged to verify their access to the Reporting Central application at least 10 business days prior to a report’s submission due date to allow sufficient time to address connection issues. This entails ensuring they have an active FedLine credential at the ready in order to check their connection.

Financial services processing

The Federal Reserve Banks have robust business continuity plans in place that focus on ensuring all financial services functions continue, our Federal Reserve employees are protected, and to provide for operational continuity in the event of reduced staffing scenarios. For example, our financial services functions are utilizing strategies like geographically dispersed split operations, remote work and staff rotations to achieve business continuity. Further, we are working closely with customers and vendors to monitor any volume changes in the processing of check, ACH, National Settlement Service, wire or securities transactions.

Please note that all published processing deadlines and funds availability schedules for ACH and check processing remain in effect. Our transaction processing platforms all have the ability to process substantially more volume than they typically receive on a daily basis. FedACH® Services customers are advised to consult Nacha Operating Rules (Off-site) and Nacha’s new resource center “ACH Resources During the Coronavirus Pandemic (Off-site)” for information about performance of obligations beyond required time limits and temporary relief Nacha is providing for some ACH Rules.

Fedwire® customers that use FedLine Solutions as their primary method to access the Fedwire Funds Service and Fedwire Securities Service should not rely on the Fedwire offline service as a contingency alternative for processing their transactions. While the offline service has proven to be an effective tool to support the most critical transactions for a limited number of customers using the FedLine Advantage® Solution when they experience a service disruption, it is not designed or intended to support a broad-based FedLine Advantage service disruption and is not a viable contingency alternative for customers that use the FedLine Direct® Solution. Therefore, your institution is encouraged to consider other alternatives for processing your critical transactions if you cannot access the Fedwire Services via your FedLine Solution.

Until further notice, the U.S. Department of the Treasury, Bureau of the Fiscal Service (Fiscal Service) will suspend the process of debiting a Receiving Depository Financial Institution’s (RDFI) Federal Reserve Bank (FRB) master account in cases where the RDFI does not respond to an ACH Reclamation notice within 60 days. Financial institutions should continue to process and respond to reclamation notices during this period in order to avoid unnecessary backlogs. Please note that Fiscal Service will continue to process agency requests for debits (i.e., 45 day amounts), financial institution debit authorizations, ACH returns as a result of death and checks received from financial institutions for amounts owed due to reclamations.

Currency

Last updated 5/1/20

The Federal Reserve Banks’ normal operating procedures include having currency reserves on hand to meet the needs of financial institutions. We are monitoring currency orders/volumes to stay ahead of any additional demand. The Federal Reserve System also has a contingency stock of new currency that can be circulated to the public.

Essential Critical Infrastructure Workforce Memo

The Department of Homeland Security identified the Financial Services sector as Essential Critical Infrastructure Workforce. Treasury Secretary Mnuchin has also issued a memo (PDF) that further states the Essential Critical Infrastructure Workforce “...includes workers who are needed to process and maintain systems for processing financial transactions and services, such as payment, clearing and settlement services, wholesale funding, insurance services, and capital markets activities; to provide consumer access to banking and lending services, including ATMs, movement of currency (e.g. armored cash carriers); support financial operations, such as those staffing data and security operations centers; and, key third party providers who deliver core services. These individuals are critical to maintaining safe and efficient financial services and ensuring citizens have access to these services that are necessary to conduct their daily lives.”

Additional information (Off-site) on continuation of work through curfews or road blocks due to the current coronavirus/COVID-19 situation is available from the Cybersecurity & Infrastructure Security Agency.

Older-series $100 Notes

Beginning April 6, the Federal Reserve will start including fit older-design $100 notes (issued 1996-2013) in financial institution orders. Financial institutions ordering from the Federal Reserve may receive older-design $100 notes and current-design $100 notes (issued 2013-present) in the same strap. For more information, please refer to the communication distributed on April 3.

Mandatory Armored Carrier Wellness Checks at Federal Reserve Offices

On April 6, the Federal Reserve System began to implement mandatory wellness checks for all visitors, including armored carrier personnel entering our premises. Please refer to April 1 communication where the Federal Reserve announced this to all FedCash Services customers. Refer to the communications page for District-specific guidance for carrier wellness checks (please note, not all Districts have communicated to their local financial institutions and armored carriers with this guidance). We hope that by applying these measures to all visitors, we will reduce the possibility of transmission of the virus and further our ability to continue to provide Cash Services to financial institutions.

Update as of May 1: The CDC has recently updated their website (Off-site) with six new indicators of COVID-19, and the Reserve Banks are beginning to add these symptoms to their carrier wellness check process. Please refer to the communications page for District-specific guidance.

We Ask for Financial Institution Assistance

While all Reserve Bank offices are fully operational and are prepared to meet demand for currency orders, we ask financial institutions to place reasonable orders for currency, and not order more currency than is needed. This will help prevent unnecessary spikes in ordering that could strain our cash operations or the supply chain. Working together, we will ensure that everyone who needs cash can receive it.

Forms guidance

Select forms and agreements are required to be completed, signed and sent via mail to the Federal Reserve Banks. As part of our commitment to maintaining a high level of preparedness during the recent public health emergency caused by the coronavirus (COVID-19), we will temporarily process the following forms submitted via email only (mailed forms received after March 16, 2020 will not be processed). Forms signed using e-signatures will not be accepted:

  • End User Authorization Contact (EUAC) Designation and Authorization Form for FedLine Web-Based Services and Other Business Application
  • End User Authorization Contact (EUAC) Designation and Authorization Form for FedLine Direct®, FedLine Command and Check 21 Large File Delivery
  • Federal Reserve Bank Reporting Central FedLine Access Authorization List
  • Fedwire Funds Service Security Procedure Agreement - Appendix A-1
  • Fedwire Services Third Party Service Arrangement - Appendix C

Please email the above signed forms to: ccc.coordinators@kc.frb.org

If you have questions, please call the Customer Contact Center (CCC) at: 888-333-7010.

Employee safety

Like you, one of our concerns is for the safety and well-being of our employees, their families and our facilities. We have taken proactive steps to help ensure the ongoing health of our Federal Reserve employees, including educating them about prevention, providing them hygiene-related precautions and requiring sick staff to remain at home.

Economic impact payments

Last updated 5/21/20

The Federal Reserve is working closely with the U.S. Department of the Treasury to support the distribution of economic impact payments. The Department of the Treasury’s Bureau of Fiscal Service anticipates continuing to transmit economic impact payments, and will share timing of those payments as information becomes available.

The Internal Revenue Service’s (IRS) Economic Impact Payment Information Center (Off-site) answers frequently asked questions related to Economic Impact Payments. Financial institutions are encouraged to regularly check this website for updated information on eligibility, requesting payments, and receiving payments. Recent updates include guidance on deceased individuals and returning payments.

The IRS has provided expanded partner materials in multiple languages (Off-site) for economic impact payments.

Communications

Last updated 7/27/20

The Federal Reserve Banks are closely monitoring conditions in our districts and service areas. To view all COVID-19 related communications, visit Communications and Press Releases.

For more information

The Federal Reserve Banks are closely monitoring updated guidance from the World Health Organization (WHO) (Off-site) and Centers for Disease Control (CDC) (Off-site) to stay informed on the latest developments about COVID-19. Please reference FedLine Home, Service Status and the COVID-19 page on FRBservices.orgSM to stay up to date on guidance as it relates to financial services. For additional information related to actions the Fed is taking to support the economy, visit the Federal Reserve’s Board of Governors (Off-site) website. For more information on the distribution of economic impact payments, visit the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) (Off-site) website or the press release (Off-site) issued on April 10.

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