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Home / Tips and Tricks / Is it time to request an IRS payment track for your missing stimulus check? What to know

Is it time to request an IRS payment track for your missing stimulus check? What to know



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You may need to request payment tracking from the IRS for your no-show stimulus check.

Sarah Tew / CNET

Tax season is back, but this year is different. Next to an tax returns, maybe you should too file for any missing incentive money you oweIf your second incentive payment never arrived, you’re not alone. Have millions experience delays or other issues who have prevented their money from arriving. Although most people will be able to claim those missing funds on their 2020 tax return have a Refund Discount (even if you don’t usually file taxes), in certain cases you may have to contact the IRS and request something called a payment tracking to locate your missing funds.

To get started, you must first install the IRS ‘Payment Status ToolDepending on what it says, you may be able to get your money earlier by filing your taxes. Or you may need to request payment tracking. (You can also use our stimulus calculator to estimate the amount of money you should have received.) We’ll help you figure out what to do.

Here’s everything you need to know about what an IRS payment track is, the two situations when you might need to apply for one instead of applying for a chargeback rebate on your taxes, and how to get started. We also have incentive payment guides older adults Adolescents SSI and SSDI receivers non-US nationals and people living abroad and people who pay or receive child benefitsPlus, here’s what we know about one so far third stimulus check, including the latest drama with the size of the check how soon a new check could come and how much money your household could getThis story was recently updated.

Case 1: According to the IRS online app, the agency sent you a check, but you never received any money

If your second stimulus control is missing, you must first go to the free IRS online payment tracking tool called Get My Payment to find out the status. We have full instructions on this how to use the Get My Payment tool and the different messages you can see hereYou must enter your social security number or individual taxpayer identification number, date of birth, street address and zip code.

The portal shows your payment status, whether your money is scheduled to be sent and the payment method (direct deposit or by mail) and date. You may also see another message or an error. (By the way, this is why you might want that register for direct deposit with the IRS if you haven’t already.)

You need to request payment tracking if the Get May Payment portal indicates that your payment was successful, but you did not receive it within these timeframes:

  • 5 days since the deposit date in Get My Payment and your bank says they haven’t received it.
  • 4 weeks since it was sent by check to a default address for the first check; after February 24 for the second check.
  • 6 weeks since it was shipped and you have registered a forwarding address with the local post office for the initial check; March 10 for the second check.
  • 9 weeks since it was shipped and you have a foreign address for the first check; March 31 for the second check.


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Case 2: You received the letter from the IRS confirming that your payment was sent, but you never received the money

About 15 days after the IRS sends your second stimulus check (by either direct deposit paper check or EIP card), you should have gotten a letter from the agency confirm your payment and provide a way for you to contact us to report any issues. If you have received this letter – also called Notice 1444 Your Economic Impact Payment – but have never received your payment, you must request a Payment Trace. Make sure to keep the letter – you will need the information to make your claim. (Here’s what to do if you have lost the IRS letter on your stimulus check

How to Request a Payment Track from the IRS Now

Call the IRS to request payment tracking 800-919-9835 or email or fax a completed Form 3911, Taxpayer Statement Regarding Refunds. (Note that if you call the number, you must listen to the recorded content before you can connect to an agent.) Find out on the IRS website where you can mail or fax that form for your state.

To fill out Form 3911, the IRS provides the following instructions:

  1. Write ‘EIP’ at the top of the form (EIP stands for Economic Impact Payment)
  2. Fill out the form to answer any refund questions related to your payment
  3. When completing item 7 under section 1:
  • Check the box for “Individual” if the Kind of return
  • Enter “2020” as tax Period
  • Don’t write anything for the Date Archived
  • Sign the form. If you are married and are applying together, both spouses must sign the form.

You should not email Form 3911 if you have already requested a tracking by phone. And you should not request payment tracking to determine if this was the case qualify for a check, or to confirm the amount you should have received, the IRS said.

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Better catch that missing money before it slips away.

Sarah Tew / CNET

How does the IRS handle Payment Trace claims?

The IRS will do the following to process your claim, according to its website:

  • If you haven’t cashed the check, the IRS will issue a replacement check. If you discover the original check between your belongings, you are expected to return it as soon as possible.
  • Once you have collected the refund check, you can expect a claim package from the Office of the Tax Authorities, containing a copy of the cashed check. Then follow the instructions provided. The Office will review your claim and the signature on the canceled check before deciding whether to issue a replacement check. This is presumably for protection stimulus check fraud

When to expect your missing incentive money

According to its website, you should get a response from the IRS about six weeks after the agency receives your payment tracking request. However, this can be postponed due to the limited staffing.

For more information on stimulus controls, view all stimulus checks facts and details to know, and three good reasons to file a direct deposit with the IRS


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