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When can you take your second stimulus check? What we know about your payment status



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If you’re looking for your second stimulus check money, the IRS will update its tracking tool to help you.

Sarah Tew / CNET

The first wave of second stimulus control deliveries already appear on bank accounts. As you wait for your new payment, it says it updates its online tracking tool called Get My Payment to help you find the status of your second stimulus check. (For an estimate, here’s how calculate your new stimulus check total.)

“The tool is being updated with new information,” the IRS said in a statement Dec. 29, adding that it will be available “in a few days.” Last time we checked, Get My Payment says the portal is “temporarily offline”.

In the spring, the IRS built its free tool to help those who qualified for the first stimulus control track their payments, including how much money for which they were eligible, their payment status and any issues that can delay delivery. As with the first round, the IRS sends these second stimulus controls to bank accounts via direct deposit or in the mail as paper checks or prepaid EIP cards. Although the tool is not yet live for it second stimulus control, we expect it to provide similar information for the new round of payments. We will also tell you another way to track your check mailed to your home.

Soon you will be able to track your second stimulus check status with the IRS

The portal for the IRS tool, called Get My Payment, is “temporarily offline” as the IRS is updating this for the just-approved second check. When the IRS rolled out the tracking tool for the first check in the spring, you could track the status of your payment, and we expect it to work the same way for people who qualify for the second stimulus check. The IRS said you can also track the status of your first check, if you’re still waiting for it.

Here’s how the Get My Payment tool worked before you went offline.

1. Go to the IRS ‘Get My Payment’ page and tap the blue Get my payment button to check the status of your payment for economic impact.

2. On the next page about authorized use, tap OK.

3. On the Get My Payment page, enter your Social Security Number (SSN) or Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN), your date of birth, your street address and your zip code. Crane Continue.


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On the next page, the portal shows your payment status, whether it is scheduled or whether the service is not yet able to determine your status.

What you need to know about using the Get My Payment tool

This is how the tool worked for the first round of payment.

  • You must enter your SSN or ITIN, along with your date of birth, street address and zip code.
  • The IRS is sending payments on a schedule. Think of it as batches of payments sent in one go. The Get My Payment tool can improve your scheduled date.
  • The IRS updates status tracking information once a day.
  • You may need to enter your details in a specific way.
  • You will receive a letter about 15 days after the IRS made your payment with information about the amount you received and how you received it.

After using the IRS tracker, you can also sign up for a free service from the post office that tells you exactly when your stimulus check arrives by mail.

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The IRS and the United States Treasury Department are now conducting the second round of stimulus payments.

Sarah Tew / CNET

How to deal with an error message

On the first check, you could see confusing messages when using the status tool – so much so that the IRS explains common status messages in an FAQ. When the tool reopens, you may get a message. This can happen if, for example, it is impossible to determine if you are eligible, or if your payment status is not available. Here are some initial reasons Get My Payment may not be able to track your payment status, although the IRS has since said it has improved its tool.

Can you set up direct deposit with the tool?

For the first checks, you can use the Get My Payment tool to provide the IRS with your bank details to have your check sent via direct deposit. The IRS has not said whether it will admit those who qualify Set up instant deposit for the second stimulus check, if the income service does not yet have your bank details. We’ve asked the U.S. Treasury and the IRS for clarification.

This handy USPS email tracking service keeps track of the email checks

If your the second stimulus check comes in in the mailthe US Postal Service has a free app that can let you know when it’s about to deliver your incentive money from the IRS. Called Informed Delivery, the email tracking service automatically scans your letters and can notify you when they arrive. Here’s more about it how to set up and use the USPS letter tracking service to keep an eye on your payment.

The IRS can send you a letter confirming that your payment has been sent

On the first check, the IRS sent a mail to a taxpayer’s last known address within 15 days of the payment being sent to notify them of the payment. The letter included information about when and how payment was made, and how to report to the IRS if you did not receive your check. The IRS has not said whether it will send another letter for the second checks, but we do know that you will still need the first letter if you plan claim any missing incentive money from the first check.

For more information, here is everything you need to know about a second stimulus check, including when the following IRS checks may be able to be sent and who qualify for more money.


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