As Americans Hope For Second Stimulus Check Some Risk Mistaking First Payment For Junk Mail
Stimulus recipients receiving money in the form of prepaid debit cards to support them during the COVID-19 crisis have reported mistaking their payments for junk mail.
Earlier this month, the Treasury announced around 4 million Economic Impact Payments would be sent as cards, with qualifying adults receiving up to $1,200 and children up to $500 each in funds under the CARES Act.
In a statement, released May 27, the Internal Revenue Service said it wanted to remind taxpayers some payments are being sent by prepaid debit card and highlighted that they arrive in a plain envelope from “Money Network Cardholder Services.”
Some people unaware of this have not made the connection to stimulus payments when seeing the letter, instead mistaking it for junk.
One recipient, Bonnie Moore, said her husband cut up a card they were sent, assuming it was a “fake card.”
She told CBS affiliate Wink News: “My husband looked at it, briefly read it and he said, ‘Do you want this?’ And I said, ‘I don’t need another fake card,’ so he cut it up in little pieces.”
Jacké Dollar, 73, also said she cut her card up, according to USA Today, later thinking “I bet it’s that stimulus thing.”
Vicki Wade, of Texas, said people might throw the envelope away “at first glance,” telling KCEN she almost did so with hers, as she does not usually use Money Network as a bank.
How Do I Get My Second Stimulus Check
You dont need to do anything if:
- You have filed a tax return for tax year 2019.
- You are a Social Security recipient, including Social Security Disability Insurance , railroad retiree. Or, you are a Supplemental Security Insurance and Veterans Affairs beneficiary.
- You have successfully registered for the first stimulus check online using the IRS Non-Filers tool or submitted a simplified tax return that has been processed by the IRS.
The IRS shouldve automatically sent your payment. All second stimulus checks were issued by January 15, 2021. If you didnt get a second stimulus check by then , you can claim your second stimulus check as the Recovery Rebate Tax Credit on your 2020 tax return or use GetCTC.org if you dont have a filing requirement.
Your Payment Hasnt Been Processed Yet
If you havent received a direct deposit or physical payment and the IRS Get My Payment Tool says Payment status not available, dont panic.
On that same page it should also state that If you get this message, either we have not yet processed your payment, or you are not eligible for a payment.
The eligibility requirements have changed from the last two rounds of payments, so pay attention to the new numbers to make sure you actually qualify this time around.
If the message you get from the Get My Payment Tool says Need more information, then your payment was returned to the IRS because it was unable to be delivered. In this case only, people who get this message can use Get My Payment to enter their correct bank account information. For direct deposit, this includes the name of your bank, your bank account number and your routing number. Do not try to contact the IRS via phone to provide bank information.
Know that the IRS only updates the Get My Payment Tool information once per day, typically overnight, so refreshing throughout the day wont yield any new information.
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Here’s What To Know Now That The Irs Has Stopped Sending Stimulus Checks
How to see if your second payment is still on the way, why some may have to wait weeks or months for their money to arrive and what to do next if you still don’t receive your stimulus check.
The IRS deadline to send out stimulus checks has passed. Now what?
Either way, if your check hasn’t appeared by Feb. 12 when the IRS officially begins to process tax returns, you can claim your outstanding $600 payment for each qualifying adult and child dependent in the form of a Recovery Rebate Credit on your 2020 federal tax return.
We’ll explain all the information you need to gather to find or claim your missing payment — including three options to help track your stimulus money now, how to match your stimulus estimate to what you actually receive and how claiming a stimulus check credit could make your late payment come even slower to arrive. Yes, this includes any makeup payments for missing kids plus any money from your first check that you didn’t get. This story was recently updated.
Who Qualifies For A Check
GettyStudent loan payments are set to resume in February 2021.
According to Mnuchins press release, Eligible individuals will receive an Economic Impact Payment of up to $600 for individuals or $1200 for married couples and up to $600 for each qualifying child. Generally, if you have adjusted gross income for 2019 up to $75,000 for individuals and up to $150,000 for married couples filing joint returns and surviving spouses, you will receive the full amount of the second payment. For filers with income above those amounts, the payment amount is reduced.
The release added: This second round of payments will be distributed automatically, with no action required for eligible individuals. If additional legislation is enacted to provide for an increased amount, Economic Impact Payments that have been issued will be topped up as quickly as possible.
How can you check on your payment?
Later this week, you may check the status of your payment at IRS.gov/GetMyPayment, wrote Mnuchin. Heres a direct link.
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Second Stimulus Check Update: Watch Your Mail For A Debit Card With Your Payment Irs Says
A United States Treasury stimulus check. Dreamstime/TNSDreamstime/TNS
The IRS said the cards were sent to speed up the delivery of second stimulus payments for millions of Americans.
IRS and Treasury urge eligible people who dont receive a direct deposit to watch their mail carefully during this period, the IRS said.
Not everyone who received a card for the first payment will receive a card for the second. They could receive a check instead. And some who received a check the first time may receive a card this time, the agency said.
The cards are being sent in a white envelope that prominently displays the U.S. Department of the Treasury seal, the IRS said. The card has the Visa name on the front and the issuing bank name, MetaBank, on the back of the card.
The federal government is sending 8 million second stimulus payments by debit card. Here’s what the card and envelope look like.
Each mailing will include instructions on how to securely activate and use the cards, the IRS said.
Karin Price Mueller may be reached at .
What Happens If You Dont Receive Your Payment Or Only Receive A Partial Amount
If you havent received your payment yet, dont panic, although its easier said than done. Compared with the first round of stimulus checks, the IRS and Treasury Department have significantly shrunk the delivery timeline by weeks, if not months. However, the text of the American Relief Plan still gives both agencies until Dec. 31, 2021, to distribute all funds, meaning the last round of checks might not hit consumers mailboxes until January 2022.
Consider signing up for the U.S. Postal Services informed delivery service, so you know in advance of any mail youll be receiving on a given day. If the IRS says it already mailed your check but you didnt receive one, down the road you might also decide to order a stimulus check payment trace. You can arrange one by calling a hotline at the IRS or submitting a completed Form 3911, Taxpayer Statement Regarding Refund by mail or fax. But be prepared: This process can take weeks. The IRS may also ask that you sit tight for the time being in some cases, for a period as long as nine weeks.
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Amount And Status Of Your Payment
To find the amount of the third payment, create or view your online account or refer to IRS Notice 1444-C, which we mailed after sending the payment.
If you are sent a plus-up Economic Impact Payment after your 2020 tax return is processed:
- The amount of your initial third payment will no longer show in your online account. You will only see the amount of your plus-up payment.
- The status of your initial third payment will no longer show in Get My Payment. You will only see the status of your plus-up payment.
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When Is My Stimulus Check Coming
Most people who qualify for a payment and filed their 2019 tax return can expect to get their stimulus check by January 15.
However, payments for taxpayers who filed through online providers TaxAct and Jackson Hewitt and used a refund-transfer program similar to the ones offered by H& R Block and TurboTax will be delayed until February 1, according to statements from the companies.
On January 8, the IRS said more than 100 million payments had already been direct-deposited into bank accounts.
Paper checks started going out in the mail on December 30, but could take up to three to four weeks to arrive. In the first week of January, the IRS began sending out debit cards loaded with stimulus payments to an additional 8 million households.
The new stimulus legislation requires the IRS and the Treasury to stop sending payments by January 15. If your payment has not been issued by that date by direct deposit, paper check, or prepaid debit card you can claim the amount you’re owed on your 2020 taxes.
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More Economic Impact Payments Set For Disbursement In Coming Days Taxpayers Should Watch Mail For Paper Checks Debit Cards
IR-2021-62, March 22, 2021
WASHINGTON The Internal Revenue Service announced today that the next batch of Economic Impact Payments will be issued to taxpayers this week, with many of these coming by paper check or prepaid debit card.
For taxpayers receiving direct deposit, this batch of payments began processing on Friday and will have an official pay date of Wednesday, March 24, with some people seeing these in their accounts earlier, potentially as provisional or pending deposits. A large number of this latest batch of payments will also be mailed, so taxpayers who do not receive a direct deposit by March 24 should watch the mail carefully in the coming weeks for a paper check or a prepaid debit card, known as an Economic Impact Payment Card, or EIP Card.
No action is needed by most people to obtain this round of Economic Impact Payments . People can check the Get My Payment tool on IRS.gov on to see if the their payment has been scheduled.
“The IRS continues to send the third round of stimulus payments in record time,” said IRS Commissioner Chuck Rettig. “Since this new set of payments will include more mailed payments, we urge people to carefully watch their mail for a check or debit card in the coming weeks.”
Second Wave Of Stimulus Checks Set To Arrive
Payments may begin to arrive as early as January 4th.
The second round of Coronavirus Stimulus Checks has been initiated by the IRS during the last week of December.
The largest majority of payments will be sent out in early January, with the first payments to be dated Monday, January 4, 2021.
For security reasons, the IRS plans to mail a letter about the economic impact payment to the taxpayers last known address. You are encouraged to retain a copy of the letter for your tax records. The letter will provide information on how the payment was made and how to report any failure to receive the payment. If a taxpayer is unsure theyre receiving a legitimate letter, the IRS urges taxpayers to visit IRS.gov first to protect against scam artists.
If you have additional questions, the IRS website is an accurate and updated resource.
Coronavirus Stimulus Payments: Please be extra cautious of scams where fraudsters may pretend to be with the IRS and ask for your personal information. There are a few important things to know and share with older family members who may not be as well-informed:
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Other Faqs Concerning The Second Stimulus Check
Instead of succumbing to worry and financial stress, here are more things to know about the second stimulus checks:
Are dependents eligible for a stimulus check?
The second round of stimulus payments proposed in the COVID-19 relief bill uses the same criteria as the CARES act when it comes to determining the eligibility of a dependent. Adult dependents like college students are not eligible for the second stimulus check. Families with a dependent under the age of 17 years old will get an additional $600 per child.
The IRS also previously reported that deceased citizens, along with trusts and estates, are not eligible. Despite this ruling, a congressional watchdog reported that more than 1 million stimulus checks were sent to deceased individuals.
A major change from the CARES act is the disqualification of households if a member didnt have a Social Security number. Now, households that do not have a Social Security number are eligible for the second stimulus check.
What if I do not recognize the bank information on the Get My Payment tool?
If you receive RRB, SSA, VA or SSA benefits via Direct Express, your second stimulus check will be deposited to the respective cards. The bank details show in the tool will be the number linked to your Direct Express card, which may also be an unfamiliar number.
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Lincoln Double Die Pennies Explained
The stimulus checks are not taxed but still must be claimed.
The third Economic Impact Payments were sent between March and December 2021 after the American Rescue Plan was passed.
Read our stimulus checks live blog for the latest updates on Covid-19 relief…
More than $160million in checks to adults worth up to $1,400 each with another $1,400 for dependents.
“Letter 6475 only applies to the third round of Economic Impact Payments that was issued starting in March 2021 and continued through December 2021,” the IRS said.
“The third round of Economic Impact Payments, including the ‘plus-up’ payments, were advance payments of the 2021 Recovery Rebate Credit that would be claimed on a 2021 tax return.”
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What If I Havent Received My Stimulus Payment
If you received the first stimulus payment via check or debit card, make sure you check all your mail and dont throw anything away without opening it. Not all envelopes will be clearly marked.
Unfortunately, if you have moved since you received the first payment, there is no way to update your mailing address at this time. You must instead file your 2020 taxes to get the stimulus check.
Tip: If you have moved, make sure to update your address for any future payments!
If you received the first stimulus check via direct deposit, you should expect the second via direct deposit as well. But if you have since closed the bank account that the IRS has on file for you, there is no way to update this information at this time. Again, you must file your 2020 taxes to get the stimulus check.
Another wrinkle: During the first round of stimulus payments, if the IRS didnt have your information on file in order to send you a check, you were able to add it using their online too. Unfortunately, for this round, its not an option.
Tip: If the IRS Get My Payment tool gives you the message Payment Status #2 Not Available, you must file your taxes to get your stimulus check.
Tip: Be on the lookout for a text message asking for details of your bank account. This is a scam! You dont have to disclose your bank account details to the IRS or anyone else to receive your stimulus money.
‘do Not Throw Them Away’
In a statement the IRS said: “Using the information in these letters when preparing a tax return can reduce errors and delays in processing.
“People receiving these letters should keep them. Do not throw them away.
“These letters can help taxpayers, or their tax professional prepare their 2021 federal tax return.”
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Usps Informed Delivery: Track Letters Straight To Your Mailbox
Informed Delivery is a free mail-tracking service from the USPS that automatically scans your incoming letters and can send you with an image each time something with your name on it is about to be delivered.
When the USPS runs mail through its automated sorting equipment, it creates a digital image of the front of all letter-size mail. Anyone who signs up for Informed Delivery can benefit from that information by asking USPS to notify you when each piece of mail bearing your name is on the way. Note that it can take three days to activate your account.
As part of the program, you’ll receive an email every morning, Monday through Saturday, to notify you about mail being delivered to you. You’ll also see a grayscale image of the letter’s front. Informed Delivery has free apps for Android and iOS, too.
Just be aware that signing up means you’ll see all mail that’s scanned by the post office. You can cancel the service at any time. Read on for details on how to sign up for Informed Delivery.