Low-Income Families Increasingly Using “Refund Anticipation Checks”

Cash-strapped Americans anxious for tax refunds are increasingly turning to payment advances, prepaid cards or other costly services when getting tax preparation help , according to new federal data raising concerns among regulators about whether consumers are fulling informed about the fees.

Regulators are looking to increase oversights of preparations amid the rise in “refund anticipation checks,” a type of cash advance especially popular among low-income families who receive the Earned Income Tax Credit.

Refund anticipation checks rose roughly 21.6 million in 2014, up 17 percent from 2011, according to IRS data.

ABC’s Scott Goldberg joined us for details Monday.

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