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Home / Tips and Tricks / If you got your third stimulus check, don’t toss the IRS letter. Here’s what to do with it

If you got your third stimulus check, don’t toss the IRS letter. Here’s what to do with it


Keep that letter from the IRS confirming your recent incentive payment.


After the IRS released the third stimulus check through mail or direct deposit, it also sends a letter confirming payment. The agency has already made and continues to make some 164 million payments send out checks in batches. If you have received your payment but think the amount is incorrect – look here– or if you haven’t received your payment at all, keep that IRS letter.

If you never received the IRS letter or if you lost it, we can tell you how to get a copy to claim missing incentive money through a IRS payment track. The letter can be used to claim the money you owe in March incentive package. For example, let’s say the IRS has your amount of stimulus payment on your taxes for 2019, but you earned less in 2020 – this means you could be eligible for money than you actually received. This can also be the case if you have a new baby or got a dependent which the IRS didn’t take into account when calculating your payment total. Also, keep in mind that if you’ve recently undergone a change of address, make sure your email is getting to your current address – you should both the IRS and the US Postal Service.

The tax day is approaching: May 17. You could be one of the millions of people who have not received your 2020 incentive payments what you were eligible for, in that case you will need a Credit for chargeback discount when you file your tax return for 2020. (You can use our calculator for first incentive payments and second payment calculator to see your estimated total.) You can also read more about one fourth stimulus control and how to get a discount on your internet bill.

That IRS letter (Notice 1444) is more important than you may think

The IRS letter that arrives after your third stimulus check, confirming your payment, is officially called Notice 1444-C. The letter, signed by Biden, shows you the amount you were paid and how you were paid – by mail or direct deposit. The letter also advises you to use it Download my payment tool or call a phone number at the bottom of the letter if you haven’t received your check.

With the first two incentive payments, the IRS also sent a letter of confirmation in the mail within 15 days of your payment being issued – notifications 1444-A and 1444-B.

If you think you have received the wrong amount, such as a dependent has been skipped – or the total does not match our stimulus calculator’s estimated amount, it may indicate that this letter may require you to track down your missing money. The IRS advises you to keep the letter for your 2021 tax return. What this really means is that it is helpful if you need to claim money in the future, as you can now on your 2020 taxes as a chargeback discount for the first two checks.

There is more information on this using the recovery discount worksheet to calculate the credit of the first two checks that you can claim against your taxes for 2020. You are essentially entering the total amount you think you owe on line 30 of the 2020 tax forms 1040 (PDF) or 1040-SR (pdf).

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Make sure the IRS has your current mailing address

The IRS would have sent a message to your last known address with information about your payment. You have to inform the IRS and USPS if you have moved. The IRS must independently have your correct information on file.


The IRS still sends third party incentive payments.

Sarah Tew / CNET

If you’ve lost or never gotten the IRS letter, you have a few options

If you don’t have the IRS confirmation letter, you should be able to find the information in your federal tax account using the IRS website.

If you haven’t set up an account with the IRS, go to the agency’s account page and tap the blue button that says Create or view your account start. You will need to have some information to set up your account, including tax and financial information, plus an email address and mobile phone number to receive activation codes. For married couples filing jointly, each spouse must log into their own account.

How to register with the IRS to verify your account

The IRS online registration process can take about 15 minutes. During the setup process, the IRS will first email you and then text you two activation codes. If the codes don’t get through, the agency will send you a letter with an activation code. It may take five to 10 days to get to you. If you want to follow the letter, you can use this free service from the USPS.

After you set up your online account with the IRS, you can check your account for the information in the notice. If your incentive payment information isn’t available when you check, the IRS said it should be in the next few weeks.

There is more about it here tax season and your stimulus check, everything you need to know about the third stimulus check and what we know child discount payments.

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