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The IRS recently launched an app that allows you to check the status of your stimulus payment and also to sign up for direct deposit. But for millions of people in the country, this has not been a smooth process whatsoever.
People have experienced all sorts of different glitches and still don’t have answers about if they are eligible and when their funds will arrive. Below, I will cover some of the glitches that have been reported and how you might go about handling those.
Payment status not available
Tons and tons of people have received the following message:
Payment Status Not Available
According to information that we have on file, we cannot determine your eligibility for a payment at this time.
The IRS offers the following explanation for this type of error message:
In certain cases, the Get My Payment app will be unable to tell you the status of your payment. You may receive this message for one of the following reasons:
- If you are not eligible for a payment (see IRS.gov on who is eligible and who is not eligible)
- If you are required to file a tax return and have not filed in tax year 2018 or 2019.
- If you recently filed your return or provided information through Non-Filers: Enter Your Payment Info on IRS.gov. Your payment status will be updated when processing is completed.
- If you are a SSA or RRB Form 1099 recipient, SSI or VA benefit recipient – the IRS is working with your agency to issue your payment; your information is not available in this app yet.
You can check the app again to see whether there has been an update to your information. Get My Payment data is updated once per day, so there’s no need to check back more frequently.
The thing about this IRS explanation is that it does not seem to provide an answer for everybody.
For example, if you know you are eligible based on your income and you filed in 2018 but did not file in 2019, why would you be receiving this message?
According to the explanation, unless you are receiving some type of special SSI benefits or the like, there is no explanation for you.
I would just assume that they are still working out the kinks in this program. But it does make people nervous because one of the explanations is that you could receive this message if you are not eligible for a payment.
So my advice would be to continue to check maybe every morning and evening of every day (just in case the website is updated in the middle of the day).
And in case you need a refresher on income eligibility here it is:
Here are the amounts you will get based on your adjusted gross income:
- If you are an individual and make $75,000 or less in one year, you will be entitled to $1,200.
- If you are filing as a couple, and make $150,000 or less in a year you will be entitled to $2,400.
- Taxpayers filing as head of household get full payment if they earned $112,500 or less
For every dependent that you have 16 years or younger, you can also receive an additional $500 (I’m not sure if there’s a limit on those). Note that you can’t get a payment if someone claims you as a dependent.
If you make more than the allocated amounts, you will receive a prorated amount up to a certain cap. For example, your payout amount over $75,000 in income would be reduced by $5 for every additional $100 of adjusted gross income. There’s a calculator here.
There is an income cap of $99,000 for individuals and $198,000 for married couples with no children. A family with two children won’t be eligible if their income is over $218,000.
Third-party tax providers
If you get your taxes processed through a third-party such as H&R Block, TurboTax and Jackson Hewitt, your funds from the tax returns are typically sent to a temporary bank account and those companies remove their fees before dispersing you your funds.
In this case, according to Mashable, “the IRS doesn’t have a consumer’s banking information on file, [and] the government has nowhere to send their direct deposit.” This would suggest that you will need to set up a direct deposit and if you have been getting an error message then you just need to keep trying.
If you attempt to check your funds too many times, you will get locked out of the system for up to 24 hours.
Some people have reported they waited longer than 24 hours and are still getting locked out so this can be a very frustrating experience.
My advice is to not check more than two times per day: morning and evening.
Matching information issues
The IRS wants you to enter your information exactly as it appears on your tax returns. This makes sense as they need consistency to properly locate your account.
The problem is that many users are entering the information exactly as it appears on their tax returns and still getting a message, “The tax return information you entered does not match our records.”
Wrong bank account numbers
There are reports out there of the IRS showing bank account numbers that do not match up with the users. I’ve even seen reports of the account numbers being off by one digit. So be sure to verify that the account numbers are exactly what they should be.
Missing dependent funds
There’s also a lot of reports of people not receiving the additional $500 that they are due for their dependents. Remember, you should be giving $500 for each dependent that is 16 years or younger.
Reportedly, the IRS is actively working on these issues so I do expect them to get fixed.
The question is when will they get fixed and what will the process be for following up on your account if the issues are not fixed for yourself. Unfortunately, right now I don’t think we have an estimated timeline or a protocol for you to follow to ensure that your account is fixed.
However, I will continue to update everyone based on the latest information that comes out of the IRS.
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Daniel Gillaspia is the Founder of UponArriving.com and creator of the credit card app, WalletFlo. He is a former attorney turned full-time credit card rewards/travel expert and has earned and redeemed millions of miles to travel the globe. Since 2014, his content has been featured in major publications such as National Geographic, Smithsonian Magazine, Forbes, CNBC, US News, and Business Insider. Find his full bio here.