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Home / Tips and Tricks / The deadline for claiming your first stimulus check in 2020 has passed. This is your last chance to get it

The deadline for claiming your first stimulus check in 2020 has passed. This is your last chance to get it


Missed the deadline to claim your incentive money in 2020? You still have an option left.

Sarah Tew / CNET

The IRS deadline to file a missing incentive payment claim this year has now passed, but you can still request to get your missing check – just wait until 2021 to receive up to $ 1,200 per qualified adult for the first payment the IRS sent in April.

We’ll show you how to find out if you’re part of a group that might still qualify for full or catch-up. This is independent of a potential second stimulus control, which Congress is still considering another economic stimulus package amid increased pressure to initiate negotiations and approve a new bill. (Like a second check has been approved, you could get it faster if you do these things now.)

We outline who might be eligible for more money in the first round and that may not qualify for a second payment, if one happens – read on for more information. This story was recently updated.

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Following stimulus checks: what to expect


How to Apply for Your Missing Incentive Fund in 2021

If you belong or have tried one of the groups below estimating your total stimulus payment and think the IRS has not sent your check in full, you have another chance to claim your stimulus check money, which the IRS calls the Recovery Rebate Credit. You can submit in tax season 2021; if the typical schedule is correct, your federal tax return is due on April 15, although in 2020 the IRS extended the deadline to July 15th as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.

While the IRS doesn’t yet have specific instructions for each personal situation (more on this below), the agency does say that people filing taxes can use 2020 Form 1040 or 1040SR to claim catch-up. If you received a partial payment, you will need the amount calculated by the IRS from the letter named Notice 1444 Your Economic Impact Payment when you apply in 2021.

Do this if you don’t normally file a tax return

In September, the IRS began sending letters to 9 million Americans who may have been eligible for a payment but may not have known they had to register to claim it. This group – which the IRS categorizes as “non-affiliates” – includes people who are did not file a tax return in 2018 or 2019, such as older adults, retirees, SSDI receivers and individuals with an income of less than $ 12,200. Those in this group were required to file a claim using the Non-Filers tool by November 21. The IRS said if you missed the deadline, you can claim the payment, again called a Recovery Rebate Credit, in 2021 when you file a federal income tax return 2020:

When you submit a 2020 Form 1040 or 1040SR you may be eligible for the Recovery Rebate Credit. Keep your IRS letter – Notice 1444 Your Economic Impact Payment – with your 2020 tax information. You will need the amount of the payment in the letter when you apply in 2021.

If you miss a payment for a dependent child

Each qualifies under the CARES Act child dependent – those 16 and under – were eligible for a $ 500 check. But some people pay were $ 500 short for each eligible dependent.

If you claimed it before November 21, you can receive payment in December. You can use our stimulus check calculator to get an idea of ​​how much you might owe.

As with the non-affiliates, the IRS said that if you missed the deadline, you can claim payment on your 2020 federal tax return in 2021, by filing a 2020 Form 1040 or 1040SR.

Note that in some cases, where parents are divorced or divorced and jointly share custody of a dependent, each parent can receive a payment of $ 500 per eligible child, so you may not even know you are eligible for the payment.

If your check was garnished by mistake, here’s what to do

Although there are a few instances where the federal government or a debt collection agency could seize your payment to cover an outstanding debt, in general, if you are eligible for a check, it is up to you to spend or save as you wish. One area in which the federal government can cash a check is for child support backlog. If it parents are divorced or divorced, only the spouse who owes child support may have the check seized.

According to the IRS, the parent who does not owe child support should receive their share of the payment without taking action. If you haven’t received your check, the IRS said it works to send the missing payments. While you can’t rely on IRS decisions much, you can also try the Non-Filers tool to make a record of your claim.

If you used our stimulus check calculator and think your check amount is incorrect

Finally, if after using our stimulus check calculatorIf you find that you may be eligible for a higher payment than you received, you can check the IRS Get My Payment tool to see if there is a check in the works. If the IRS is waiting for information from you before your check is sent, you can claim your payment next year.


There are still unclaimed stimulus controls.

Sarah Tew / CNET

If you are a US citizen abroad, in US territories, or not a citizen

The IRS has rules that determine the terms of payment for US citizens living abroad and non-US citizens who work in the US – along with spouses of non-resident aliens. We have a guide running through the different eligibility scenarios along with what to do if you qualify but did not receive a check.

People in prison or prison are eligible by court order

Since April, when it started sending payments, the IRS has been going back and forth on whether those in US prisons and prisons are eligible for an incentive check. However, a recent ruling by a federal judge in California appears to have resolved the matter – at least for now – and requires the IRS to contact those in prison who can file a claim for a stimulus check. The deadline for filing a claim through the mail has passed (it was November 4) but those who were incarcerated also had until November 21 to file online. The IRS has appealed the case.

To know everything about the first payment, see our guide to the first round of checks. We also have an idea of ​​how quickly the IRS could send the second round payments like another incentive payment is approved and what other benefits you can expect another economic aid package.

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