The sheer number of people that are going to receive a stimulus check from the government makes it difficult to get everything straight. Complications dealing with a change of address or bank accounts are not always available to government agencies. This can make it more difficult for the IRS to deliver a payment to the right place. Fortunately, there are things you can do to find out why you have not received your stimulus check yet.
But one thing you do not want to do, the IRS says, is to contact them by phone. The IRS website says that their phone operators do not know any more than what the website reveals.
Make Sure You Are Eligible for a Check
Not everyone will get a stimulus check. If you did not receive one in the first round, you will not receive a second one.
Possible Reasons It Has Not Arrived Yet
The reason you have not received it may not be entirely the IRS’s fault. Think back a little to determine if you used an online software company to file your taxes, if you are no longer at the same address, or if you changed banks since you filed last year’s taxes.
Find the Status with the Get My Payment Tool
The Get My Payment Tool is a website that the IRS set up. It enables people to track their stimulus check if they have not received it yet. Once you log in, you can learn about the status of your check. You can also see if and when the IRS deposited it in your bank account, or, if you can expect to get it through the mail.
The IRS says that you will receive the second check in the same way you received the first one. This means you will get the money through direct deposit, a check in the mail, or an EIP card (debit card).
Get a Payment Trace
Under certain conditions, you can ask the IRS to perform a Payment Trace. This means that you need to keep waiting longer: 5 days after Get My Payment reports a deposit date but your bank denies having received it; 6 weeks after it was reported mailed to you and you have a correct forwarding address on file with the Post Office; and 4 weeks after it was mailed to your current address. You will need Form 3911 Taxpayer Statement Regarding Refund to request a Payment Trace. You can mail or FAX it to the IRS.
File the Loss on Your 2020 1040 Tax Return
In some cases, the IRS has revealed that some people need to file their 2020 tax returns before you can get a stimulus check. If you have gone to the Get My Payment site and saw a message that said “Payment Status Not Available,” you will need to claim a “Recovery Rebate Credit” on your 2020 tax forms.
Making this claim requires that you have the Notice 1444-B Your Economic Impact Payment. This form will come about 15 days after your check has been sent – be sure to keep the form. You should get it sometime in late January or February. The form will tell you the amount of the check you should have received.
You will report the amount you should have received on line 30 of your Form 1040 tax form. If you owe money, the credit will decrease the amount you owe by the amount of your check. Or, if the IRS owes you money, your debt will decrease by the amount of the stimulus payment you should have received.