Why haven’t I gotten my stimulus payment yet?: IRS explains

National

Economic stimulus checks are prepared for printing at the Philadelphia Financial Center May 8, 2008 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. (Jeff Fusco/Getty Images)

(ABC4) – While the vast majority of the latest stimulus payments have been distributed, the Internal Revenue Service says additional batches of payments will be sent in the coming weeks.

On Wednesday, March 24, the IRS distributed about 37 million payments in the second batch of Economic Impact Payments from President Joe Biden’s American Rescue Plan.

The total number of disbursed payments from the latest stimulus package is estimated to be about 127 million, worth approximately $325 billion, according to the IRS.

Of those, about 37 million payments – or about $83 billion worth – were distributed on March 24. Earlier in the month, the first batch of payments amounted to about 90 million payments, a total value of more than $242 billion.

The IRS says additional batches of payments will be sent in the coming weeks as direct deposits and through the mail as paper checks or debit cards, but the vast majority will be direct deposits. No action is needed by most taxpayers to receive these payments.

Many federal beneficiaries who filed 2019 or 2020 returns or used the Non-Filers tool were included in these first two batches of payments, if eligible. For federal beneficiaries who did not file a 2019 or 2020 tax return or did not use the Non-Filers tool, the IRS is working directly with the Social Security Administration, the Railroad Retirement Board, and the Veterans Administration to obtain updated 2021 information to ensure that as many people as possible are sent fast automatic payments. More information about when these payments will be made will be provided on IRS.gov as soon as it becomes available.

The IRS says that the way you receive the third stimulus payment – either paper check, prepaid debit card, or direct deposit – may be different than the way you received a previous stimulus payment.

Paper checks will arrive in a white envelope from the U.S. Department of the Treasury. In the memo field, you will see “Economic Impact Payment.” The check will look like this:

Sample U.S. Treasury check
Photo courtesy IRS

The prepaid debit cards, commonly referred to as an EIP Card, will also come in a white envelope, prominently displaying the seal of the U.S. Department of the Treasury. The card has the Visa name on the front, as you can see below, and the issuing bank, MetaBank, N.A. on the back. Each mailing will include instructions on how to activate and use the card.

Front and back of a sample debit card
Photo courtesy IRS
Sample envelope for Economic Impact Payment debit cards
Photo courtesy IRS

There are a number of other reasons why you might not have received your stimulus payment yet.

You haven’t filed your taxes yet

If you haven’t filed your 2020 tax return yet, the IRS will use your 2019 tax return to determine your eligibility. In addition, if you did not use direct deposit with your refund, or did not get a refund last year, the IRS may not have bank account information for you.

You filed your taxes by paper

Filing your taxes by paper, rather than electronically, can take time. Because of this, they may not have been processed yet.

You moved or changed bank accounts

If you’ve done either of these, it could mean your payment is coming via the mail, and may take longer.

Your income changed

If your income went up in 2020 versus 2019, your eligibility may have changed under the American Rescue Plan.

You owe money, like child support

Owing money, like child support, can delay your stimulus payment.

By the end of March, most people should start seeing their payments, according to the IRS, or have an idea of what the status of their payment is.

You can check the status of your payment with the IRS’s ‘Get My Payment’ tool. For more information on the stimulus payments, and how to file your taxes if you didn’t get one, visit the IRS’s website.

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