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Home / Tips and Tricks / The IRS is now sending $ 600 incentive checks. When yours comes, why January 15th is important

The IRS is now sending $ 600 incentive checks. When yours comes, why January 15th is important


Timing is critical to giving a second stimulus check to as many as 160 million Americans.

Sarah Tew / CNET

The IRS has been mobilized and is broadcasting second stimulus controls through direct deposit, physical checks in the mail and EIP cards. Tens of millions of people will soon start receiving up to $ 600 per eligible person (here’s how calculate how much incentive money you could receive), but one thing to note is that despite the faster schedule, the IRS delivery is still on divided into different payment groups – and that would be one different situation For some.

The important thing to note is that the language of the incentive bill says the IRS says it second stimulus check money after January 15th, giving the IRS a 17-day window from the first December 29th delivery to process potentially more than 100 million payments.

We’ll explain more about this cutoff and what happens when you change your second stimulus control by then – or even your first payment – and how long you may have to wait. Here’s how follow a paper stimulus check or EIP card to your mailbox, and here’s what we know about one third stimulus check in 2021. This story is often updated with the latest information available.

Direct deposits started on December 29 and will continue

On Tuesday, the IRS announced it had begun making its first direct deposits into bank accounts, and payments will continue until next week. The IRS said that eligible individuals do not need to take any action to receive this second payment, and that it is the direct deposit information it has a file to make the payment.

The IRS warned that some “consider the direct deposits to be pending or provisional payments into their accounts before the official payment date of January 4, 2021.”

At this point, you can’t register a new direct deposit account with the IRS – that could potentially change in the next week, but we’re not sure.

Timeline of the second stimulus control

Dates for second check

Hypothetical data for a third stimulus check

House has taken the last bill

21st of December

April 5th

The Senate approved the final bill

21st of December

6 April

President signs

December 27

April 7

First direct deposits issued

December 29

Week of April 12

First paper checks sent

December 30th

Week of April 12

First EIP cards shipped

December 30th

Week of April 12

Refund Discount

After filing tax returns for 2020


Paper stimulus checks and EIP cards are sent, but not all at the same time

If the IRS doesn’t have your current direct deposit information on file, the payment will be sent as a check or EIP debit card in the post – they started on December 30. Here’s how you can follow your second stimulus check to your mailbox, free.

How to check the status of this new incentive payment

The IRS said it is updating and anticipating its Get My Payment tool for the second round of payments those who qualify for a check will be able to see the status of both the first and second payment in a few days after the portal is updated. The Get My Payment portal is available in English and Spanish.

What about prepaid EIP debit cards?

The IRS said to speed up payment delivery, it will send some payments using one Economic impact Payment prepaid debit card and notes that some people who last received a paper check may receive a debit card this time, and some people who last received a debit card may receive a paper check.

The IRS warns that those who qualify but do not receive a direct deposit should do so Check out their post for a check or EIP debit card. The debit cards arrive in a white envelope with the seal of the United States Treasury Department on it, according to the IRS.

Why is January 15, 2021 an important date to know?

January 15 is the closing date in the $ 900 billion incentive bill; after mid-January, the IRS and the US Treasury must stop sending payments. If you don’t have your full second stimulus check money before January 15, you must claim all or part of the missing amount when you file your federal tax return in 2021 through the Refund Discount. You can also claim all the money the IRS still owes you from the first round of payments.

People who receive their incentive payment by direct deposit are less likely to be affected. But there is potentially an obvious downside for people who do did not file a direct deposit with the IRS.

Tying of the delivery of a second stimulus check Tax returns for 2020 will almost certainly delay delivery for many people, as wide variation in circumstances will result in some people filing taxes as early as January and others not filing taxes until April 15, or even later if they have to file for a deferment. It’s also not clear how quickly the IRS would process the payments.

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Second stimulus checks: everything you need to know


The IRS said if Congress approves By increasing the check amount from $ 600 to $ 2,000 this week, the bonus amount will be spent “as soon as possible.”

In the chart below, we map out the payment schedule for the second round of checks, plus a projection if Congress agrees a third stimulus check next year, after President-elect Joe Biden will be sworn in on January 20.

How long can it take to receive the second stimulus check by mail?

Since the new incentive law sets a January 15th deadline for the IRS to send payments, people who receive their payments will second stimulus check in the mail – either as a paper check or a prepaid debit card – should look for a payment starting now through the first weeks of January, according to the IRS. According to the Treasury, 22% of payments since last summer have been made with paper checks and another 3% with prepaid debit cards.

But after January 15th you will have to claim all the money the IRS owes you with your 2021 tax return. That could further slow down your stimulus check, as the timing would depend on:

  • When filing your taxes for 2020, the deadline can be April 15, unless you are applying for an extension.
  • How long it takes for the IRS to process your tax return, which may include your second incentive check.
  • If there are any complications in your particular scenario that could further delay your check.

We keep an eye on the situation, which is constantly evolving. Here are the latest updates of the second stimulus control and here’s how you can now calculate your estimated total for up to $ 600 per person.

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