The IRS is in the midst of 130 million people have already received a payment for per person in their household ( , or if you're expecting a check by mail). But with the checks arriving in the middle of an already-complicated tax season, things can get confusing, fast.to millions of . More than
Whether you got your check or you're still waiting, you may be wondering: Will yourbe based on your 2019 or 2020 taxes? What if you , or haven't filed your ? (Unless you , you'll have to file by the .) What if your since you last filed, like if you , or ?
We've got the details you need, including who is immediately eligible for a "plus-up" payments from the IRS to correct any changes to stimulus money you're owed based on your , and what happens if the IRS owes you a catch-up payment down the line. Also, here are , what we know about a so far and for the .) This story has been updated with new information.
How is the IRS dealing with third stimulus check calculations when it comes to both 2019 and 2020 income?
Thestates the IRS would determine your total third stimulus payment based on your from your most recent tax return -- either , if you've filed the latter this year in time for the IRS to determine your payment.
There are several implications to this. For example, if you earned more in 2020 than in 2019, but the IRS uses your 2019 return (and gives you more stimulus money than you might be eligible for), you(more below). This is assuming you haven't filed your 2020 taxes.
And if the agency owes you more money based on 2020 taxes than 2019, then you may find you're waiting for one of two things to happen. Either the IRS automatically sends a catch-up, or "plus-up" payment between now and the Dec. 31, 2021, or you'll have to claim the money later.
The IRS is currently accepting 2020 tax returns through. If you're expecting a tax refund hat includes from the , we especially recommend if you don't already have it, so you .
Here's what happens if the IRS owes you more stimulus money
In many cases, the IRS will have issued your check before it processes your 2020 tax return. If you filed your return and your circumstances changed in 2020 in a way that would "plus-up" payment from the IRS.in this round -- such as if you , or if you or added a -- you may be owed a
For people who did submit their 2020 taxes, the IRS is IRS said.to people who received their in March based on their 2019 tax return, but are eligible for a larger payment based on their recently processed 2020 tax returns -- basically, making up the difference in what you're owed. These payments have already started going out for some, with a large portion of adjustments issued around April 7. Plus-up payments will continue weekly, the
If you're owed a plus-up payment, you shouldn't have toor do anything else to claim it, other than file your 2020 tax return as soon as possible. The IRS should send it out automatically once it processes your new return, likely by or by paper check, if you don't have your account details on file.
What happens if my plus-up payment never arrives?
The IRS has until Dec. 31, 2021, to finish sending stimulus check payments, and that will include the catch-up payments for people who are still owes stimulus money. But if the automatic adjustment never arrives, what should you do?
The first thing is to make sure you know how much stimulus money you should expect,. If the amount the IRS tells you to expect differs greatly from the , you'll need to keep an eagle eye out for payment adjustments.
If the extra money never arrives, you may need to file a claim, either later in 2021 (if the IRS opens up an adjustment window) or potentially a year from now on your 2021 tax return -- much like the currentfor from the first two rounds of stimulus payments.
We've reached out to the IRS for more information on how long it could take to send out all of these supplemental payments, and what to do if your plus-up payment never arrives. We will update the story when we get more information.
What about if the IRS uses my 2019 tax return, but I earned more money in 2020?
If you qualify for the fullbased on your 2019 taxes but don't qualify based on your 2020 taxes -- assuming the IRS used your 2019 return -- you won't have to pay the IRS back for that discrepancy. Here are situations where you would .
What to know if the IRS never processed your 2019 tax return
Due to pandemic-related delays, the IRS is still working its way through a backlog of paper tax returns from 2019. As of the end of January 2021, there were 6.7 million individual income tax returns for 2019 that had yet to be processed, according to the agency. These processing delays could be due to a number of things, including a mistake, missing information, or suspected identity theft or fraud. If the IRS contacts you for more information, you should get a letter. Resolving the problem then depends on how quickly and accurately you get back to the agency.
However, the new bill specifies that awill be based on your 2019 or 2020 tax return -- not your 2018 one.
The bill says:
On the basis of information available to the Secretary shall, on the basis of such information, determine the advance refund amount with respect to such individual.
If your 2019 tax return is still being processed, the best thing to do right now is to Janet Holtzblatt, a senior fellow at the Urban-Brookings Tax Policy Center. But if the holdup in processing your 2019 return is due to a problem that also occurs on your 2020 return, your 2020 return may get slowed down, which could delay your payment, Holtzblatt said.as soon as you can, according to
What if my third stimulus payment never arrives, or if money is missing?
If you're, but yours never arrives by , , or Direct Express card (for example if you or ), you'll likely have to take another step to claim that money. This happened to millions of people during the for , including IRS errors, out-of-date banking information or and to get the IRS their information.
Much like with the first and second checks, you'll likely be able to claim any missing money from the third check owed to you or your dependents during tax season next year, 2022. However, the IRS has yet to say if there will be an opportunity to. The best thing to do right now to make sure your third check does arrive is to , even if you don't usually have to file one.
For more, check out what you should and shouldn't do, and what we know so far about a .