IRS Glitch Impacts Stimulus Payments


On April 15, what would have been the original tax deadline, the IRS officially began to send out the stimulus checks that were created as a part of the CARES Act, in order to help stimulate the economy for individual taxpayers as the country experiences an economic downturn in the wake of COVID-19.

The payments were for up to $1,200, depending on the individual’s tax filing status. While the process was designed to be as automatic as possible — directly sending payments to as many individuals as possible using information from the 2018 and 2019 tax returns — many found themselves without their stimulus payments on April 15. The process was slowed down for many people for a variety of reasons, whether their information was not on file or their specific situation made it difficult for them to receive the direct deposit. A specific glitch, however, made the process difficult even for those who were supposedly in the clear.

Many consumers who filed with online software like TurboTax and H&R Block found their payments delayed because their direct deposit information was not filed with the IRS. This particularly affected consumers who applied for a Tax Refund Anticipation Loan (TRAL). In the case of a TRAL, your tax preparer fronts the cost of your refund so that you may receive it earlier, which means your refund is sent to the company by the IRS. In this case, it is especially important to make sure that the IRS has your direct deposit information so that your stimulus check can be sent to you directly. Customers affected by this glitch were receiving messages that said “Payment Status Not Available” when checking their status on the “Get My Payment” page. The IRS claimed they were working to resolve the issue that led to the glitch, but in the meantime, consumers who used these platforms will have to wait some extra time before their stimulus checks arrive.

If you still need to update your payment information, the IRS’ “Get My Payment” page is available.

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