Earnin is a financial services company with an earned salary app that gives users access to income before payday. Users connect their bank accounts, provide employment information, then submit timesheets to document hours worked. Earnin also offers Automagic Earnings to users which allows the app to track their work time via GPS.
There are no monthly subscription fees or mandatory tips, but users can pay a fee for Lightning Speed. This allows app users to receive funds instantly or within minutes, rather than waiting the usual one to three days.
To be able to use Earnin, a consumer must:
- To be employed
- Have a fixed workplace, an electronic timing system, or PDF-like timesheets
- Have a regular payroll schedule (weekly, bi-weekly, semi-monthly or monthly)
- Have more than 50% of their direct deposit sent to a checking account
- Use a cell/cordless phone and/or email address they own
- Be at least 18 years old or have reached the age of majority in their state of residence
Earnin allows users to withdraw $100 to $500 per pay period as an advance on their next paycheck. The maximum payment period increases as users repay their advances on time and in full. App users can check their current daily and maximum payment period by tapping “MAX INFO” in the app. Earnin also offers a Boost feature that allows users to request a maximum boost of $50 by having a member of the Earnin community vouch for them.
Funds are usually available within one to three days. However, users can pay $1.99 to $3.99 for Lightning Speed, which promises funds instantly or within minutes.
Interest and fees
The Earnin app is free to download and use, and Earnin charges no interest on the money you withdraw. There is, however, an optional feature that allows users to tip between $0 and $14 for more services. Users can also pay up to $3.99 for faster funding times with Lightning Speed.
These tips and optional fees seem small but can result in extremely high APRs. Consider, for example, a borrower who requests a $100 cash advance five days before payday and pays a $1 tip plus a $3.99 Lightning Speed fee. In this scenario, the advance costs $4.99 and translates to an equivalent APR of over 364%.
Earnin is not an overdraft protection service, but it can help users avoid fees imposed by their personal bank by advancing funds against hours already worked. This means Earnin users can access emergency cash through the app without having their bank account overdrawn.
There are, however, certain situations where an Earnin refund withdrawal may result in bank overdraft charges. If this happens, users can submit a screenshot of the overdraft fee and Earnin will cover the amount under certain circumstances.