What to do if you are waiting for the money


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Even when the US government has deployed about 90 million stimulus checks for $ 1,400, you may still be wondering, “Where is my money?”

The IRS and the Treasury Department announced last week that they had mailed the first batch of stimulus checks totaling more than $ 242 billion.

The stimulus payments of $ 1,400 were authorized by Congress and President Joe Biden earlier this month. This time, the payments are $ 1,400 per person, as well as $ 1,400 per child or adult dependent.

As with the first two sets of stimulus checks, you must meet certain income thresholds to qualify. Generally, people with up to $ 75,000 in adjusted gross income will receive a full payment. That works out to $ 112,500 for heads of household or up to $ 150,000 for married couples filing jointly.

This time, however, the payments are phased out more quickly. Checks are capped at $ 80,000 for individuals, $ 120,000 for heads of household, and $ 160,000 for married couples.

Other eligibility rules also apply.

Millions more payments will be made in the coming weeks by direct deposit, mailed paper check, or debit card.

If you don’t receive a payment or you receive a smaller deposit than you anticipated, you may fear that you are missing it. If that’s the case, here is what you can do.

File your 2020 tax return

Stimulus checks of $ 1,400 will generally be calculated on your 2019 or 2020 tax returns, whichever you filed most recently.

If the IRS has received and processed your 2020 filing, your third stimulus check will be based on that.

This is important to know because if your income falls in 2020, your stimulus check could be higher as a result, as long as you meet the income requirements and other qualifications.

If the government sends your payment based on your 2019 return, it will assess whether it should have been higher once your 2020 return is processed and potentially fill it in with a follow-up payment.

Filing your 2020 tax return promptly has several advantages.

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First, you can update your direct deposit information, if necessary.

Second, applying as soon as possible may reveal that you were eligible to receive additional stimulus funds from the previous two payment rounds.

Third, there may be other stimulus benefits that you qualify for. That includes the earned income tax credit, child tax credit, or other tax benefits.

The IRS does not plan to reopen the tool for non-taxpayers that was available last year. Instead, people who do not yet have their information on file with the government are encouraged to file a tax return to receive their money.

The IRS has more information on free filing tools on its website.

See the ‘Get My Payment’ site

The IRS Get My Payment website will display the status of payments.

That site will be updated periodically as payments are processed.

Unfortunately, it is not equipped to allow you to submit new or different bank account information.

Be patient

It may take time for your money to arrive.

For most taxpayers, no action is needed to request a payment, according to the IRS.

The money will automatically be sent to qualified individuals and families that the government has on file.

That includes normally non-filing individuals who used the non-taxpayer tool last year or who filed a special simplified tax return.

It also includes federal beneficiaries who receive Social Security, Supplemental Security Income, Railroad Retirement, or Veterans Affairs benefits.

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