Since Congress approved and President Joe Biden last week signed into law a $1.9 trillion COVID-19 relief package including economic stimulus payments for roughly 80 percent of Americans, the status of those payments has become a popular topic of conversation.
A small minority of individuals began to receive them over the weekend, via direct deposit, but the vast majority of those who are eligible to receive the $1,400 payments have yet to see the promised relief. Some individuals are seeing a pending payment in their online banking apps, while others have checked repeatedly with no relief in sight.
That’s why the IRS has launched something called the “Get My Payment” tool, which allows anyone to quickly check the status of their stimulus payment online by providing a few pieces of information, including their social security number and birth date. In some cases the tool will provide the user with an estimated deposit date, while in others it will tell them their payment status is “not available” or that more information is needed.
Those who are eligible for the payment will receive up to $1,400 for individuals or $2,800 for married couples, plus $1,400 for each dependent.
The payments are calculated based on the information from 2020 tax returns, or a 2019 return if an individual hasn’t yet filed their 2020 return. For individuals who don’t file tax returns, the IRS created a special non-filers payment portal last year.
“Normally, a taxpayer will qualify for the full amount if they have an adjusted gross income of up to $75,000 for singles and married persons filing a separate return, up to $112,500 for heads of household and up to $150,000 for married couples filing joint returns and surviving spouses,” the IRS website says. “Payment amounts are reduced for filers with incomes above those levels.”
Means of payment include direct deposit, pre-loaded debit cards and paper checks that will be mailed to recipients.
The IRS said it “encourages people to check Get My Payment for additional information” about how they should expect to receive their payment.
“The tool on IRS.gov will be updated on a regular basis starting Monday, March 15,” it noted. “People who don’t receive a direct deposit should watch their mail for either a paper check or a debit card. To speed delivery of the payments to reach as many people as soon as possible, some payments will be sent in the mail as a debit card. The form of payment for the third stimulus payment may differ from the first two.”
Additional information as well as answers to frequently asked questions about the economic stimulus payments may be found on a FAQ page the IRS has developed.