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Home / Tips and Tricks / The real reason for filing taxes as early as possible this year. Hint: it’s not your tax refund

The real reason for filing taxes as early as possible this year. Hint: it’s not your tax refund

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The deadline for submitting your tax return is April 15 this year, or October 15 if you are applying for an extension.

Angela Lang / CNET

There are two great reasons to organize your taxes in anticipation tax season 2020, but neither has to do with one tax returns (although that’s okay too). The IRS shouldn’t officially starts processing returns until February 12th, but you can take a step towards faster delivery of a third stimulus check (if it happens during tax season, or earlier) through set up a direct deposit with the IRS. In addition, the sooner you submit a file, the faster you can recover the file unpaid incentive check the money you owe.

At least 8 million people who were be eligible for stimulus check-in money received none, and millions more may not have received all the funds they were entitled to, because of a administrative error or other problem. There may be some issues with custody and child support, miss money for it dependent children in general, or unintentional seizurealso.

Either way, we’ll explain how early filing will help you get it stimulus check the money you may owe (and also the tax refund). Then we’ll show you how to figure out how to estimate your total and what to do to get it into the form of a tax credit on your 2020 tax return. Plus, here’s everything you need to know incentive checks and your taxes for 2020, the most important facts to keep in mind and when it is time contact the IRS or set one payment trace.

This is when you could miss out on incentive money and your tax refund

While technically you can still file your taxes by mail and request a paper check, the quickest way to submit the money you owe electronically and have money available deposited directly into your bank account. This year, the IRS will not accept tax returns until February 12so you can submit your own files as soon as possible (April 15th is the last day to submit). The IRS says 90% of filers will receive their refund within 21 days or sooner, but it may also take even less time than that.

The IRS says it Where’s My Refund tool displays the status of your refund within 24 hours of submission, which may include confirmation that your refund has been made. From that point on, it can take one to three days for the money to be in your bank account.

When to expect your tax refund

If you submit a file on this date This is the fastest This is the last

12th of February

February 19

March 5th

March 1

8 March

March 22nd

April 1st

April 8

April 22nd

April 15th (last day to submit)

April 22nd

6 May

October 15 (last day with extension)

22 Oct.

November 5th

Assuming seven days is the fastest you get your combined tax / incentive refund and 21 days is the longest, we’ve outlined what a difference could be if you apply sooner rather than later. (Below is more information on how to calculate how much money you have in addition to your tax returns.)

See if the IRS owes you an incentive payment

To find out if and how much money you owe from a previous round of stimulus checks, if applicable, you must first determine how much you owed for each previous payment and then subtract the amount you actually received (if applicable ). ).

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Second stimulus checks: everything you need to know


To calculate the payments you owed:

Next, you want to check your bank account where your payments were deposited to determine the amount. (If you EIP card, you can view the balance and transaction history here.) The IRS should have sent you a letter within 15 days of issuing your stimulus check, however it was issued, and that letter must state how much money you have received. (Here’s what to do if you haven’t gotten the notice from the IRS.)

If you don’t have that letter anymore, you can use the IRS’s Get My Payment tool to help you find out when you received payment. It also shows you the last four digits of the bank account it was deposited into if it was deposited directly.

There is also a form to help you calculate the amount you owe on page 59 of this pdf with instructions for 1040 and 1040-SR tax forms, but it’s a doozy to follow.


If any of your previous stimulus checks were accidentally cut off, you can claim the difference as a tax credit when you file this year.

Angela Lang / CNET

5 reasons the IRS might owe you money from both stimulus checks

There are a variety of reasons the IRS may still owe you stimulus check fees, including:

How to Claim Your Stimulus Credit When You File Tax Returns

The IRS requires you to complete Form 1040 or 1040-SR if you have a Refund discount on your taxes for 2020. Once you calculate the amount due, enter it on line 30 of one of these forms (see screenshot). Yes, it is that simple.


The fastest way to get your money is to deposit electronically and have money deposited into a bank account.

Sarah Tew / CNET

How your missing stimulus check money arrives

If you must receive a refund from the IRS, this will include both your full refund amount and what you owe from the Refund discount. In other words, it gets bigger. However, if you owe the IRS money, your Recovery Rebate Credit will be applied to the debt. If the tax credit is more than you owe, you will be refunded the difference.

Here is what to do if you don’t submit a file, that is, you don’t have to file a tax before 2020, and you still owe an incentive check. If you have dependent children, this information about the child discount can help put more money in your pocket. And here is how to calculate your adjusted gross income, also known as “AGI.”

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