If you haven’t received your stimulus check, you may be wondering why.
The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) recently shared some updates on the latest COVID-related relief package, which includes direct cash payments of up to $600 for most adults ($1,200 for married couples who file their taxes jointly) plus $600 per qualified child.
Where Is My Stimulus Payment?
Here are some things you should know about the process and about tracking down your payment.
1. You Can Try To Track Your Stimulus Check Before It Arrives
Both methods require you to enter some personal information, but that should take only a few minutes.
2. There Are Different Types of Payment Methods
The IRS and the U.S. Treasury Department have taken a three-pronged approach to distribute the latest round of stimulus payments. If you’re eligible, you’ll be paid one of these three ways:
- Direct deposit: If the IRS already has your payment information, the money may show up in your bank account.
- Paper checks: You may receive a paper check mailed to you via the U.S. Postal Service.
- Economic Impact Payment Cards (EIP cards): These prepaid debit cards are going to 8 million Americans. The IRS is mailing them to your most recent address on file.
“Some people who received a paper check last time might receive a prepaid debit card this time, and some people who received a prepaid debit card last time may receive a paper check,” the IRS says in a news release.
The IRS is supposed to send all stimulus payments by January 15, 2021. If you’re eligible and you still haven’t gotten your money, it may be because of an error. More on that later.
3. The Economic Impact Payment Card (EIP Card) Functions Like a Debit Card
If you receive a plain white envelope, don’t throw it away. It might be an Economic Impact Payment Card (EIP Card) with your stimulus money.
“EIP Cards are being sent in a white envelope that prominently displays the U.S. Department of the Treasury seal,” the IRS says. “The EIP Card has the Visa name on the front of the Card and the issuing bank name, MetaBank®, N.A. on the back of the card.”
If you’ve received an EIP card, follow these steps to activate it:
- Call the phone number indicated on your card
- Set your 4-digit PIN
- Check your balance by calling 1-800-240-8100 or you can register an account at card.moneynetwork.com.
According to eipcard.com, the card’s official website, your funds won’t ever expire even though the card has a “valid through” date. After that date, you’ll just need to call customer service at 1-800-240-8100 to request the funds in check form.
4. You Might Be Eligible for the Recovery Rebate Credit
If you never get your stimulus money, you can request a “Recovery Rebate Credit” when you file your taxes.
If you qualify, your unreceived stimulus money will be applied to your 2020 tax return. So it will either add to your tax refund or reduce what you owe the IRS.
The Recovery Rebate Credit is only for those who don’t receive one or both of the two stimulus payments that went out in 2020 and early 2021.
If you’re eligible for a Recovery Rebate Credit, the IRS urges you to file your taxes electronically to cut down on the delay. Read more from the IRS.
If you still haven’t gotten your stimulus payment(s), the IRS is asking for your patience. The agency’s website is under heavy demand, and it has had to redirect payments sent to the wrong accounts.
If you have gotten your stimulus money, here are four suggestions from Team Clark on things to do with your stimulus check.