How To Get Missing Funds From Previous Stimulus Payments
If you’re certain you meet the qualifications to receive the first or second stimulus check, what to do next depends on your situation.
If you never got your money or a confirmation letter from the IRS that your payment was sent, you needed to file for the money on your tax return this year. We’ve got full instructions for how to file for your recovery rebate credit here, but basically, you’ll use the 2020 Form 1040 or Form 1040-SR to claim a catch-up payment. However, the last day to file your taxes has passed, so this will only work for those who filed a tax extension.
The tax return instructions include a worksheet to figure out the amount of any recovery rebate credit for which you’re eligible, according to the IRS. If you’re part of a group that doesn’t usually file taxes , you’ll still need to file this year. You should also save your IRS letter — Notice 1444 Your Economic Impact Payment — with your 2020 tax records, as you’ll need it to file the claim.
You can also file for a Recovery Rebate Credit if you didn’t receive the correct amount of money for your child dependents in your first or second check. The same goes for parents of 2020 babies .
You Recently Switched Banks
Maybe youve finalized a divorce, or closed or changed your bank account to avoid fees or you moved to a new state where your old bank has no branches. Unfortunately, the IRS cant make a payment to an account it doesnt recognize.
If your most recent stimulus payment was sent to a closed or inactive bank account, by law the financial institution must return that payment to the government. The bank cannot hold and reissue the payment to you if the account is not active, even if you have other active accounts at the institution.
You cannot change the bank information that the IRS has on file. You will have to wait until the payment is returned to the IRS and then the government will mail a check or debit card to youand this may take a number of weeks.
My Stimulus Payment Went To The Wrong Bank Account
If the Get My Payment tool tells you your check will be direct-deposited, it will also provide the last four digits of the number of the bank account into which your stimulus payment will be deposited. For the initial checks, some individuals saw that their deposit was going to an old bank account, or they even saw bank account numbers that they didn’t recognize. Here’s what to do:
- If the tool says that your payment was deposited into your bank account but you haven’t seen it yet, your bank may still be processing it.
- You won’t necessarily get the third check direct deposited, even if the first or second one was direct deposited.
- If your third stimulus payment is sent to a closed bank account, the bank is required to transfer the money back to the IRS. The IRS will not redeposit it to you or mail you a paper check. Instead, you will have to file your 2021 tax return to claim your “Recovery Rebate Credit.” See below for instructions on claiming the rebate on your tax return.
- If H& R Block submitted your last tax return and you signed up for a “refund transfer,” the IRS might deposit your stimulus payment with H& R Block . H& R Block should transfer the money to your bank account within 24 hours.
- Those who submitted their last tax return with Turbo Tax should receive their payments in the same bank accounts through which they received their tax refunds.
Recommended Reading: When Is The California Stimulus Check Coming
Keep An Eye On Your Bank Account And Mail
Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin said last week that direct deposit payments would continue into this week. The official payment date for those direct deposit payments is Jan. 4, according to the IRS.
If you received your first stimulus payment via direct deposit, that is likely how youll receive the secondbut it isnt a guarantee. If the information the IRS has on file for you has changed, for example, you can probably expect a mailed payment this time around . In general, the IRS and Treasury urge those who dont get their payment via direct deposit by early January to watch their mail carefullyeven if you think you should have gotten your payment by direct deposit.
If youre expecting your payment in the mailwhich will come in the form of a check or debit cardyoull likely have to wait a bit longer to receive it. The cutoff date for the IRS to issue payments is Jan. 15, according to the text of the most recent coronavirus relief package. Last week, the IRS said that paper checks would start to be mailed on Dec. 30, but that deadline indicates that yours might not be in the mail until mid-January.
You can also use the Get My Payment tool to track stimulus payments. The tool will tell you if your payment was sent, and in what form . If it says Payment Status Not Available, you were either not eligible, or the IRS wasnt able to issue the second payment, so youll need to claim it when you file your taxes.
Havent Received Your Third Stimulus Check Call The Irs Phone Number And Tell Them
If you havent received your third government stimulus payment yet, theres a way to track it down without going to the IRS website and navigating the seemingly endless maze of menu links, FAQs and status messages.
Stimulus Update: States Give Out Thousands of Bonus $1,000 Checks Will You Get One?
Just pick up your phone and punch in these 10 numbers: 800-919-9835. Thats the IRS Economic Impact Payment phone number, which connects you with a live representative.
As noted on the Toms Guide website, the phone number is a good option if you have a hard time navigating the IRSs dedicated stimulus check website, or if you have a question that cant be answered on the site.
Just keep in mind that the IRS has been overwhelmed with inquiries during the pandemic, with millions of Americans clogging up the phone lines to ask about their tax refunds, stimulus payments and other benefits.
More: A Petition Nearing 3 Million Signatures Calls for $2,000 Monthly Stimulus Checks for Every American
When you call the number, youll likely be greeted by an automated recording that will attempt to help you before youre connected with a live representative. Be prepared to sit on hold for a while, and make sure you have your questions and basic personal information ready.
Meanwhile, something you should never do is accept phone calls from someone claiming to be with the IRS the IRS never calls. If someone calls you claiming to be with the IRS, they are almost certainly trying to scam you.
Recommended Reading: Can Someone Else Cash My Stimulus Check
How We Make Money
You have money questions. Bankrate has answers. Our experts have been helping you master your money for over four decades. We continually strive to provide consumers with the expert advice and tools needed to succeed throughout lifes financial journey.
Bankrate follows a strict editorial policy, so you can trust that our content is honest and accurate. Our award-winning editors and reporters create honest and accurate content to help you make the right financial decisions. The content created by our editorial staff is objective, factual, and not influenced by our advertisers.
Were transparent about how we are able to bring quality content, competitive rates, and useful tools to you by explaining how we make money.
Bankrate.com is an independent, advertising-supported publisher and comparison service. We are compensated in exchange for placement of sponsored products and, services, or by you clicking on certain links posted on our site. Therefore, this compensation may impact how, where and in what order products appear within listing categories. Other factors, such as our own proprietary website rules and whether a product is offered in your area or at your self-selected credit score range can also impact how and where products appear on this site. While we strive to provide a wide range offers, Bankrate does not include information about every financial or credit product or service.
What Should You Do If You Havent Gotten Your First Check
While many are searching for evidence of their second stimulus checks, some people havent even received their first. The IRS continued to make these payments until Dec. 31, 2020, but if you still dont receive one, or dont receive the full amount, youll want to claim it via the Recovery Rebate Credit when you file your 2020 taxes.
Read Also: Get My Stimulus Payment Irs
My Third Stimulus Payment Was Too Low
Many individuals and families will find that their third stimulus checks are lower than they thought. That could be because people who make over a certain amount have part of the $1,400 payment taken away. For example, single people who make over $75,000 in adjusted gross income will have their second stimulus checks reduced by 28% of the income over $75,000. Married people filing jointly and heads of household will have their payments reduced by a similar amount.
The third stimulus payment is technically based on your 2021 income, but the IRS is using your 2020 tax return to estimate it. If your income goes down in 2021, making you eligible for a payment, or a higher payment, you’ll be able to file a tax return for your 2021 taxes and you’ll receive the stimulus money you didn’t getâit’s called a recovery rebate credit.
Series: The Pandemic Economy
Fiscal Responses to COVID-19
ProPublica is a nonprofit newsroom that investigates abuses of power. Sign up to receive our biggest stories as soon as theyre published.
Its been 217 days since Congress instructed the IRS to send $1,200 stimulus checks to every citizen below a certain income threshold. And yet, its likely as many as 12 million people including those who most need a financial boost never got the cash.
The reasons include confusion about how the complex program works, IRS missteps, technical snafus and Treasury Department policy decisions that cut out large groups of people altogether. Those who fell through the cracks have until Nov. 21 to claim the money or risk losing out on any second round of stimulus payments, which Congress has been negotiating for months.
Don’t Miss: Child Support Stimulus Checks Deposit Date
How Do I Find My Stimulus Money What To Do About A Missing $1400 Check
Your third stimulus payment could be delayed for a variety of reasons. We’ll help you track down your IRS payment.
Alison DeNisco Rayome
Alison DeNisco Rayome is a managing editor at CNET, now covering home topics after writing about services and software. Alison was previously an editor at TechRepublic.
Clifford is a managing editor at CNET. He spent a handful of years at Peachpit Press, editing books on everything from the first iPhone to Python. He also worked at a handful of now-dead computer magazines, including MacWEEK and MacUser. Unrelated, he roots for the Oakland A’s.
To date, the IRS has made 169 million payments for the third round of stimulus checks for $1,400. The agency continues to send weekly batches of payments, so there is still time if you are waiting for your money. However, there could actually be an issue with your payment and the IRS doesn’t want you to call them with problems related to a missing check.
Reasons for a delay could include a lag in mail delivery , if the IRS has incorrect direct deposit information for you or if the agency suspects identity theft. There might be other problems if you’re a recipient of SSI, SSDI or veterans benefits. Or maybe you received a letter from the IRS saying that your $1,400 payment was sent, but the check never arrived. Then what?
Use The Irs Get My Payment Tool To Track Stimulus Money
For the third stimulus check: It’s worth visiting the IRS’ online portal designed to track the status of your 2021 payment. Generally, it should tell you when your check will be processed and how you’ll receive it: for example, as a paper check in the mail. If the Get My Payment tool doesn’t give you information you can understand or says your check is on the way and you haven’t received it, you may need to eventually request a payment trace or file for a recovery rebate credit.
For the first or second payment: If you can’t find the letter sent by the IRS, you’ll need to create an online profile with the IRS to see your status. For any problems, you may need to issue a payment trace or file for a recovery rebate credit, even if you don’t normally submit a tax return. Here’s more information about finding the amount of your first and second payments.
Read Also: When Is The Next Stimulus Coming
First And Second Stimulus Check
You will need to file a tax return for Tax Year 2020 . The deadline to file your taxes this year was May 17, 2021. The tax filing extension deadline is October 15, 2021.
If you missed the filing deadline, you can still file your tax return to get your first and second stimulus checks. If you dont owe taxes, there is no penalty for filing late. If you owe taxes, you may be subject to penalties and fines for not filing or not paying taxes. The government may reduce your tax refund to pay for any taxes you owe and other federal and state debts.
To learn more about your options if you think you owe taxes, read Filing Past Due Tax Returns and What to Do if I Owe Taxes but Cant Pay Them.
Americans Who Didnt Receive The Full Stimulus Amount That They Were Entitled To
If you received a payment but you dont think it was as much as it shouldve been, you should claim your Recovery Rebate Credit.
Americans should first think back to what they were eligible for from both rounds of stimulus payments. Individuals earning up to $75,000 in adjustable gross income were eligible for the full $1,200 payment in March and the second $600 payment from late December and early January. Married couples earning up to $150,000 were eligible for payments twice that size. Those earners were also eligible for an extra $500 and $600 for every dependent claimed on their taxes.
After that, payments phased out by $5 per every $100 over those income thresholds. This is probably where it gets a bit trickier.
Because the first stimulus check was larger, payments phased out at a later point on the income scale than they did for the second round. Reduced $1,200 checks went out to individuals who made up to $99,000 a year and married couples who earned up to $198,000. In the second round, individuals and married filers were eligible for a partial check up until earning $87,000 and $174,000, respectively.
Its important to calculate first for yourself how much youre owed. Then, compare that with official documents from the IRS showing your stimulus check amount. Those can include the letter accompanying your payment, as well as another special form, Notice 1444 or Notice 1444-B, which most likely came with your first check earlier in 2020.
Recommended Reading: Who Is Eligible For Stimulus Check
What Do I Do If My Payment Was Sent To The Wrong Bank Account
Many taxpayers who used H& R Block, TurboTax or another tax preparation software company have reported issues with receiving their payments. Like with many of the second stimulus checks, the IRS has seemingly sent the funds to the wrong bank accounts.
The IRS has said that if this is the case, the funds will be sent back to the agency and then reissued as either a paper check or debit card and sent to the address the agency has on file for each affected taxpayer. The Get My Payment tool will show the updated information when it’s available.
Get My Payment Says Payment Issued But I Haven’t Received It
The IRS says that it may take three to four weeks to receive a check after it’s mailed. If it has been weeks since the Get My Payment tool says the payment was mailed, and you haven’t received it, you can request a payment trace. The IRS will research what happened to your check if the check wasn’t cashed, you will need to claim the “Recovery Rebate Credit” on your next tax return. If the IRS finds that the check was cashed, you’ll receive a claim package from the Treasury Department with a copy of the cashed check and instructions on filing a claim.
Similarly, if the Get My Payment tool says your payment was direct-deposited, but the money doesn’t show in your bank account after five days, first check with your bank. If the bank says it hasn’t received a payment, you can request a payment trace.
To request a payment trace, call 800-919-9835 or fill out IRS Form 3911, Taxpayer Statement Regarding Refund.
Don’t Miss: Wheres My 2021 Stimulus Check
Your Stimulus Check Eligibility Could Depend On Your Taxes
If you’re right on the cusp of the income limits described below, when you file your taxes could make the difference between qualifying for a partial check or not. That’s because a third stimulus check is now arriving during tax season.
The language in the stimulus bill makes it clear that the IRS will base your next stimulus check on your 2019 or 2020 taxes, whichever is on file when it processes your payment. However, the IRS is reportedly delayed in processing new tax returns. If you made more in 2020 than in 2019, time is on your side. The new tax deadline is May 17. If you need more time, you might want to request a tax extension.
At this point of the stimulus check delivery cycle, filing taxes sooner may not be to your advantage. The IRS is prioritizing stimulus check distribution over tax returns, and when the processing happens is outside your control.
If you did already receive your third stimulus check and it was based on your 2019 taxes but you qualified for more with your 2020 return, the IRS will be sending “plus-up payments” to correct the amount between now and Dec. 31, 2021. If you don’t receive your catch-up payment by then, you’ll need to claim it on your taxes next spring.