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Phone Scams, IRAs and Tax Extensions: The IRS published multiple reminder letters this week. In IR-2017-64 the Service warned tax preparers to watch for phishing emails claiming to be from clients. The latest tactic is for a scammer to send an email to tax preparers with a "last...

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Tuesday June 2, 2020

Washington News

Washington Hotline

IRS Updates "Get My Payment" Tool

Millions of Americans are receiving Economic Impact Payments from the IRS. With over 30 million Americans unemployed, the $1,200 payments for individuals (incomes up to $75,000) and $2,400 payments for married couples (incomes up to $150,000) are a welcome relief. In addition, there is a $500 payment per dependent child.

Electronic payments to taxpayers who provided their bank account numbers for direct deposits of refunds on 2018 or 2019 tax returns were made in April. The IRS created the "Get My Payment" tool on to enable Americans to review the status of their payments.

Because millions of Americans do not have direct deposit information on file with the IRS, their paper checks may be delayed for a period between two and six weeks. In addition, millions of workers with low, modest or moderate incomes, such as Supplemental Security Income and Veterans Affairs beneficiaries, were not required to file 2018 or 2019 tax returns. Their checks are delayed, and they may not receive the $500 per qualified child payments until after their 2020 taxes are filed.

IRS Commissioner Chuck Rettig highlighted updates to the "Get My Payment" tool designed to help these individuals and families. He noted, "We want to 'Plus $500' these groups so they can get their maximum Economic Impact Payment of $1,200 and their $500 for each eligible child as quickly as possible. They will get $1,200 automatically, but they need to act quickly and use the Non-Filers tool on to get the extra $500 per child added to their payment. Everyone should share this information widely and help others with the Plus $500 Push, so that more Americans get more money as fast as possible."

Rettig continued, "The IRS is working hard to find new ways for people who do not have a filing requirement to receive their Economic Impact Payment. The Non-Filers tool is an easy way people can register for these payments. I appreciate the work of the Free File Alliance to quickly develop a Spanish -language version of this tool to reach additional people. This is part of a wider effort to reach underserved communities."

The "Get My Payment" Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) explain how to update your information and promptly receive a payment. It also covers common problems and offers solutions.
  • Check Sent to Unknown/Incorrect Account — If you used the Refund Anticipation Loan or Refund Anticipation Check method and had your refund sent to that account, the stimulus payment may also be sent there. Some individuals had their tax refund loaded on a debit card. If either of these circumstances applies to you, after the payment is returned to the IRS it will be mailed to the address on your 2019 or 2018 tax return.
  • Error in Payment Amount — Most of the shortfalls in the stimulus checks will be for families with qualifying children. If your payment does not include all of your qualified dependents, you will qualify to receive a $500 rebate per child on your 2020 tax return when that is filed in April 2021.
  • Did Not File and VA or SSI Recipient — If you are a VA or SSI recipient and do not file a return, you still may receive the $500 per qualifying child payment this year. You may use the Non–Filers tool and enter the appropriate information by May 5, 2020.
Editor's Note: With billions of dollars in federal stimulus payments, there are risks for individuals. The IRS urges all Americans to be on the lookout for scammers. Do not open emails or answer questions on phone calls about your Economic Impact Payment. You should only use for information and services.

Published May 1, 2020
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