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Home / Tips and Tricks / Stimulus checks first go to direct deposits. Can you sign up with the IRS?

Stimulus checks first go to direct deposits. Can you sign up with the IRS?


If you haven’t registered a direct deposit account with the IRS, we’ll get you started.

Angela Lang / CNET

The IRS was looking for the green light from President Joe Biden to begin sending the third stimulus check as part of $ 1.9 Trillion Incentive BillWith Biden signs the Emergency Relief Act The IRS and Treasury Department can now start on Thursday delivering the first wave of $ 1,400 payments into Americans’ bank accounts ASAP Saturday or Sunday (here’s how you can do that follow your stimulus check

With the first two payment rounds, the IRS and the United States Treasury Department prioritized payments to people with diabetes information about direct deposit in the file(Here is how to calculate your new payment.) What if you qualified for a check, but haven’t set up a direct deposit?

If the IRS hasn’t registered your bank details yet, the agency has built an online tool (for the first check) to help you add it. However, as of Friday morning, the tool did not accept any new submissions. The IRS has not reopened that portal with the second check, with the agency just over two weeks to send more than 100 million payments. With the third stimulus check Starting this weekend, here’s what we expect to happen, and everything you need to know about direct deposits. This story has been updated with new information.

Does the IRS allow me to register for direct deposit with the third payment?

You can already register for direct deposit when you file federal taxes, but if you just signed up and the IRS sent your Tax return 2020 as the basis for your third check, it is not clear whether it will use your account for wire transfer.

For the initial check, the IRS created an online Get My Payment tool to make it possible who were eligible provide bank details to receive their payments directly into their bank accounts. The IRS shut down the direct deposit registration feature on May 15, 2020 and did not turn it back on for the second check, when the IRS had a little more than two weeks to complete the payments.

It’s not clear when or if the IRS will re-enable the tool this time, but the agency has until December 31, 2021 to send the payments, so this round won’t work under such a tight deadline.

The new account charges the IRS and the US Treasury Department to send the new incentive checks, if applicable, “electronically,” but as of Thursday, the IRS said it is “reviewing implementation plans” and “coming back for information shortly.” Without guidance from the IRS, we don’t know whether the IRS will either let those eligible for a payment set up a direct deposit with the agency or change outdated bank information.

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Why would I want to use direct deposit to get my stimulus check money?

More than 75% on the first round and more than 80% on the second payments were distributed via direct deposit. During the first round of stimulus check, the IRS encouraged people who had not registered a direct deposit with the agency to register for direct deposit anyway. The agency said these people could still receive their checks faster, even if they signed up “late” compared to waiting for a check in the mail.

What information does the IRS need to set up a new direct deposit account?

If the IRS accepts new bank information for the third check through the Get My Payment tool, you want to have your bank account type and routing and account numbers at hand. There are several ways to find this bank information.

Banking website: Your bank’s website may display your routing and account numbers. Log in to the account you want to use and find the numbers you need.

Banking app: If your bank has an app, it can show you your account and routing numbers. In the app, tap the account you want to use to see the account and routing numbers.

Printed check: At the bottom of your check, you will most likely see three sets of numbers: The first set of nine numbers is your routing number. The second series of 8 to 12 numbers is your account number. The third set is the one you don’t need for direct deposit as it is the number of the individual check.

Check out this IRS page for more help finding your routing and account numbers.


You may want to set up a direct deposit with the IRS if you haven’t already.

Sarah Tew / CNET

Am I guaranteed to receive my stimulus check by direct deposit?

If you’ve already filed a direct deposit with the IRS, the agency said it will use that information to make your payment. However, for the first and second checks, some reported receiving their payments by mail, either as a paper check or EIP card by posteven if the IRS had their bank information. The vast majority of the first and second payments were made by electronic transfer. You can track your payment using the IRS Payment Status Tool.

If you needed motivation for that submit your tax return early, the IRS said it will use your most recent federal tax forms it processed in determining the amount of your third party payment. If you provided your bank information when submitting your application, the IRS can use it when sending your payment. It’s a gamble that the IRS will process your new application by the time it comes in your name, but that’s still a possibility.

What if there is a problem with direct deposit?

This can happen. With the earlier payments, the IRS experienced problems sending incentive payments to millions of people using tax filing software such as TurboTax and Jackson Hewitt. Now that the IRS is sending the third checks in the middle of the tax season, this can become a problem again.

How would the IRS have gotten my bank details for the third check?

The IRS has several ways to find your bank information.

  • You filed a tax return in 2019 or 2020 and you returned it via direct deposit.
  • You’ve already filed your tax forms this year and provided the IRS with your bank information.
  • You have registered your bank details for the initial check through the IRS ‘Get My Payment online tool.
  • You have provided bank details via the Non-Filers: enter payment details in tool here if you normally do not file a tax return.
  • From another federal agency that grants benefits to you, such as the Social Security Administration, Veterans Affairs, or the Railroad Retirement Board.
$ 100 bills

In general, you will get your money faster via direct deposit than with a paper check.

Stephen Shankland / CNET

What if my bank details have been changed for direct deposit?

With the first stimulus checks, you can use the Get My Payment and Non-Filers tools to provide the IRS with your bank information. However, the IRS had said it doesn’t allow people to change the direct deposit information for an incentive payment it has registered. This is a protection against fraud.

In the second checks, the IRS did not accept new or changed bank information. If the IRS tries to make a payment into the now-closed bank account, the financial institution must return the payment to the IRS, the agency said. The agency has not said how the third check will handle bank changes.

If you’ve moved, you can provide the IRS with your new postal address

Do I need to have a bank account to receive my direct deposit check?

According to the Urban Institute, people with bank accounts and direct deposits (who are disproportionately white) were more likely to get their first stimulus check in late May than people who identify as black, Hispanic, or below the poverty line. This was directly linked to groups who were more likely to have bank accounts and who had submitted that information to the IRS to facilitate tax returns for direct deposits.

Bank of America, JPMorgan Chase, Wells Fargo, and several other major banks are now offering more affordable check-free bank accounts as part of a program to make it easier for people to get bank accounts.

For more on the controls, here’s when IRS starts sending the third checks, how much you could qualify with this payment and how track your payment with the IRS

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