What is going to happen with Direct Connect bill pay?

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BOB139
BOB139 Member ✭✭✭
I got an announcement the other day that 5-10 other banks will change connection methods.

It's my understanding once it is changed Direct Connect bill pay will no longer work.

Just today I got prompted to update Bank of America and Wells Fargo can't be too far behind.

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  • Boatnmaniac
    Boatnmaniac SuperUser ✭✭✭✭✭
    edited October 2022
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    You are correct:  When a bank converts from DC to EWC+ the Bill Pay functionality directly from Quicken to the bank will cease for us.
    I think we need to be prepared that most, if not all, banks with DC will eventually migrate to EWC+ over time.  How soon this will happen is anyone's guess but I do anticipate the pace of Financial Institutions (FIs) converting to EWC+ to accelerate.  Schwab, PayPal and Chase have already migrated to EWC+.  BofA is in the process of migrating.  More will follow.
    EWC+ is Intuit's/Quicken's response to a new universal connections protocol called FDX that is being driven by a number of FIs.  The FIs are the ones who are pushing for EWC+ and are essentially forcing Quicken (and other 3rd party financial softwares) to comply with FDX or be left out in the cold with no way for their customers to be able to download transactions into the software.
    You can read more about this FDX consortium, why they are moving in this direction and who the consortium members are at:
    DC is a 2-way communication method between our Quicken software and the FI.  It is because of this that DC Bill Pay is possible.
    EWC+/FDX is, like EWC, a 1-way communication method...just from the FI to Quicken.  So, Bill Pay is not possible with it.
    Will Bill Pay ever be possible with EWC+/FDX?  I've learned long ago to never say "Never" but I would be very surprised if it will.  One of the main reasons for EWC+/FDX is that it gives FIs more control over standardizing on a protocol that will reduce security risk to them...and many FIs do view the current DC and EWC protocols as being something somewhat outside of their control so in their minds that is a security risk.  I don't see banks as ever being willing to give up this new control to any 3rd party in the future.
    IMHO I believe (do not know for sure) that Bill Pay functionality like DC Bill Pay will go away as more and more FIs convert to EWC+/FDX.
    That will leave us with a few options to pay bills:
    • Use Quicken's Bill Manager Check Pay (Quick Pay is not currently available with EWC+ but I was told they are exploring how that might be able to be changed in the future).
    • Set up our Bill Pays directly with our banks in our online bank accounts.
    • Set up our billers to directly debit our credit cards and/or checking accounts.  (I do this already...almost all bills are set up to be paid in full on the due dates via credit card or checking account debits.  It works well and it has allowed me to reduce the number of Bill Pays to only 2-4 each.)
    • Go back to writing out and mailing checks (ugh!).

    Quicken Classic Premier (US) Subscription: R55.26 on Windows 11

  • Robert Hargraves
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    Another solution might be to pay bills directly on the Bank of America website Bill Pay. Then Quicken should change to be able to download the Bill Pay instructions to our check registers? Before waiting for checks to clear and be downloadable from the bank? So Quicken register might show pending transactions? Looking at https://financialdataexchange.org/FDX/FDX/The-Consortium/Members.aspx?hkey=362ecd23-b752-48aa-b104-a99e916276c8 it appears to me that the member banks colluded to develop a new protocol that PROHIBITED accepting instructions from customers' computers. I'd change banks to be able to continue Direct Connect, but the banks prohibit competition. We need an enterprising law firm to tell Justice Department.
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