About 20 million Americans eligible to receive stimulus payments under a federal scheme aimed at helping people hard-hit by the COVID-19 pandemic are still awaiting their checks — and the Internal Revenue Service has warned it could take till June or later for those payments to arrive.
If you are eligible for a stimulus payment — up to $1,200 for an individual taxpayer — but haven’t yet received it, you have until 12 p.m. ET on Wednesday, May 13, to provide your banking details via the IRS’ online Get My Payment portal.
The IRS has said that recipients who set up direct deposit should expect to receive their stimulus checks much quicker than those who don’t.
“After noon Wednesday, the IRS will begin preparing millions of files to send to [the Bureau of Fiscal Services] for paper checks that will begin arriving through late May and into June,” the IRS said last week.
The Get My Payment portal has, however, been plagued with technical problems since its launch.
The Washington Post reported last month that many people using the tool had received “Payment Status Not Available” notices when trying to input their information. Others complained of not receiving their checks or getting the wrong amount deposited despite updating their details successfully.
IRS said Monday that it had rolled out “significant enhancements” to the portal to “deliver an improved and smoother experience.” It didn’t elaborate on what improvements were made.
Other than possible issues with the online IRS tool, income, family size and when you filed your last tax return, among other factors, could also contribute to a delayed payment.
CBS News noted that taxpayers in some states, particularly those with a higher proportion of lower- and middle-income households, have been receiving their payments much sooner than others.
Almost all eligible taxpayers in West Virginia, for instance, which has a median annual household income of about $44,000, have received their checks, the network reported. In New Jersey, however, where the median annual household income is $82,000, only 7 out of 10 eligible taxpayers have received their payments.
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