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Here’s how to get your $1,200 stimulus check faster

Published Apr 20th, 2020 2:05PM EDT
Stimulus Check
Image: ERIK S LESSER/EPA-EFE/Shutterstock
  • The IRS last week started making $1,200 payments to eligible taxpayers via direct deposit.
  • For taxpayers who don’t have direct deposit set up, the IRS is planning to mail out checks over the next few months.
  • For people who want to receive their $1,200 stimulus check faster, the IRS has an online tool where users can enter their banking account information online and receive payment via direct deposit.
  • Visit BGR’s homepage for more stories.

The impact of the coronavirus on the U.S. economy has been nothing short of staggering. Nearly all non-essential businesses have been closed for weeks on end and millions of Americans, as a result, have lost their jobs. As it stands now, an estimated 10% of the entire U.S. workforce is without work on account of the coronavirus and, in turn, unemployment claims are historic levels.

In light of that, President Trump a few weeks ago signed a $2 million stimulus package that calls for all eligible Americans to receive a one-time $1,200 payment. The obvious goal here is to help individuals and families get through an economic downturn that may come to rival the Great Depression. While the coronavirus seems to have peaked in many areas, there’s still no telling when businesses will re-open and life will return to normal.

Last week, the IRS started making stimulus payments as millions of people woke up to find an additional $1,200 sitting in their bank accounts. And while there were a few problems along the way — such as some folks not receiving additional cash for dependents — the IRS seems to be doing a decent job of processing payments in a timely manner.

Not all taxpayers, however, have their bank account information linked up with the IRS. For these individuals, the IRS is planning to send out $1,200 checks in the mail starting sometime this week. And while that seems easy enough, some checks may not arrive until July or August because the IRS will be sending checks out in waves over a period of a few weeks. Of course, with the economy being what it is, many people need an influx of cash immediately and aren’t in a position to wait a few months for their stimulus check to come in.

The good news, though, is that the IRS recently launched a tool that allows taxpayers to enter their direct deposit information online and subsequently accelerate the payment process. If you’re currently waiting for the IRS to send you a check but would prefer a payout via an immediate direct deposit, all you have to do is go to the IRS’ Get My Payment tool, select “Get My Payment” and enter in your social security number, date of birth, and mailing address to get started.

Note that if you receive a “Payment Status Not Available” error message, it likely means that the IRS hasn’t processed your 2019 return yet. The IRS notes that it’s also possible that the “the application doesn’t yet have your data” and that they’re “working on adding more data to allow more people to use it.”

There’s also a chance you’re simply not eligible for the $1,200 stimulus check. Recall that a list of people ineligible for payment includes anyone who earned more than $98,000 in 2019, college students, immigrants without social security numbers, people who aren’t up to date on child support payments, and dependents. Also note that if you made less than $98,000 but more than $75,000 last year, you’ll receive less than $1,200.

As a final note, if you didn’t file taxes in 2018 or 2019 — which could happen if you didn’t have enough income to report or if you were a dependent at the time — you can receive a payment by entering in your direct deposit information via this IRS page.

Yoni Heisler Contributing Writer

Yoni Heisler has been writing about Apple and the tech industry at large with over 15 years of experience. A life long expert Mac user and Apple expert, his writing has appeared in Edible Apple, Network World, MacLife, Macworld UK, and TUAW.

When not analyzing the latest happenings with Apple, Yoni enjoys catching Improv shows in Chicago, playing soccer, and cultivating new TV show addictions.

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