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Should you claim missing stimulus check money? Why do you need that IRS letter first?


Without this information, you may not be able to claim your missing payment during tax season.

Sarah Tew / CNET

If you were eligible for an incentive money, the IRS had to send you two things: First your payment and then a few weeks later a message in the mail about your payment. But if you never received money from the first or the second round of payment you need that notice to make a claim the amount for which you are eligible (up to $ 1,200 per person for the first check or up to $ 600 per person for the second) when you file your federal taxes this year, as a Refund Discount.

That notification contains information about your stimulus check money – use our calculator to find out how much you should have received on a first or second check. But what happens if you never received that letter, or if you lost it or throw it away?

We’ve got everything you need to know on how to get a copy of the IRS information needed to claim any missing incentive money on your taxes. Here is also more information on how to file for the stimulus credit, Why would you want that file your taxes early and set up direct deposit when you do, and anything a new incentive account could contain, including a new stimulus check in front of more than double the second payment. This story was recently updated.

What Are IRS Notices 1444 and 1444-B – and Why Do You Need Them to Claim Your Missing Money?

Within 15 days of the IRS issuing your first and second payments – if you qualified for incentive money – the agency would send a message to your last known address with your payment details. For the first payment, the IRS would have sent you 1444 notification and 1444-B for the second.

The IRS said you will use the information from these notices to claim money for which you were eligible, but you didn’t when you filed tax returns this year. There is more information on this using the recovery discount worksheet to find out what credit you can claim on your taxes. You basically enter the total amount you think you owe on line 30 of the 2020 1040 or 1040-SR tax forms.

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Where can I find the information that was in my IRS notice if I don’t have the letter?

If you don’t have an IRS confirmation message, you can find the information on your federal tax account using the IRS website.

If you don’t have an account set up with the IRS, go to the IRS 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.


The IRS has sent two rounds of incentive payments.

Sarah Tew / CNET

What if I cannot complete IRS registration?

The online registration process can take approximately 15 minutes. During the installation process, the IRS will first email two activation codes and then text them. 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 coming weeks.

For more information about tax season and your stimulus check, here’s what you need to know tax terms, why you want early in and how estimate the size of your second check. (You can also make an estimate the size of your next stimulus check.)

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