Depending on your personal situation, your deadline to claim any or additional coronavirus stimulus money is Sept. 30 or Oct. 15. Miss the deadline, and you'll have to wait until next year for much-needed COVID-19 cash.
Since it's still unclear if or when we might get another COVID-19 relief payment, it's even more important that every person who's eligible get all they can from the first stimulus payout.
And to do that, a lot of folks need to officially touch base with the Internal Revenue Service. Soon. Like in a couple of days for some families.
Wednesday, Sept. 30, is the due date for folks who get federal benefits, have minor dependent children and who didn't have to file a tax return for 2018 or 2019.
For others who didn't file a Form 1040 for either of those tax years, the regular filing extension due date of Oct. 15 is the must-meet deadline.
Miss those dates and you won't get any coronavirus economic impact payment (EIP) by the end of 2020.
Instead, you'll be leaving a possible $1,200 per person (double that for eligible joint Form 1040 filers) and another $500 for qualifying children in Uncle Sam's hands until next year.
Returns are basis of EIPs: When the IRS was given the job of distributing the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act money, it used taxpayer data from 2018 or 2019 returns as its delivery guide.
That system has worked for millions of taxpayers who've gotten at least some COVID-19 relief money.
But the IRS says almost 9 million people who likely are eligible for an EIP didn't file a Form 1040 either the 2018 or 2019 tax years. This typically happens when you don't make enough money to trigger the filing requirement.
Others did get an automatic payment because they were on a government benefits' roll, but they didn't get all they are due. The IRS didn't know about their dependent children, so they didn't send these individuals the added $500 per qualifying child.
In both cases, the IRS can't send them an EIP or any added EIP funds until they give the tax agency their full information.
They can do this by using the IRS' online Non-Filers: Enter Payment Info tool.
And to ensure that the money goes out this year, the IRS established the Sept. 30 and Oct. 15 deadlines to give its staff time to process the info and then distribute the COVID-19 money.
More funds for families: Individuals who didn't get the added child-related EIP typically received federal benefits from a variety of Uncle Sam's agencies.
They include payments for:
- Social Security retirement
- Survivor or disability benefits
- Supplemental Security Income (SSI)
- Railroad Retirement benefits
- Veterans Affairs Compensation
- Veterans Affairs Compensation and Pension (C&P) benefits
If you get any of these federal benefits and also have dependent children, you need to use the Non-Filers tool so you can get any potential catch-up EIP for the kiddos.
But you must do so by this Wednesday, Sept. 30.
General non-filers have more time: Those who had little or no income in 2018 and 2019 and therefore didn't have to file a 1040 for either year also are missing out on possible stimulus money.
Regardless of where they live — and the IRS says these non-filers are spread across the United States and at military postings worldwide — they, too, need to use the Non-Filer online info tool to let the IRS know of their lower earnings and whereabouts.
And these individuals have more time to claim their COVID cash. Their deadline to give the IRS the needed info via the Non-Filer tool is the extended tax filing deadline of Oct. 15.
Act now or wait until 2021: In both the added child EIP catch-up and basic non-filer situations, if eligible individuals miss their respective deadlines they will have to wait until 2021 for any coronavirus relief money.
That year, they'll have to file a Form 1040 and claim the stimulus money as a tax credit on their 2020 income tax return.
It's easier and will get you the money more quickly if you simply use the Non-Filer tool now. Or by Sept. 30 or Oct. 15, depending on your circumstances.
The IRS also recommends that if you have a bank account, select the direct deposit option when using the Non-Filer tool. Otherwise, you'll get a paper coronavirus relief check.
No guarantee of EIP in 2020: Also note that while it's important for you to supply the IRS with the necessary information so it can process your potential EIP, just registering at the Non-Filer tool is no guarantee you'll get the money this year.
Other factors come into play in determining whether a person is due any stimulus money and if so, exactly how much.
Still, it's sure bet that you'll get no money if you don't apply for it.
Don't take that chance. If you haven't filed a tax return for the last couple of years, or got an economic impact payment for just yourself but not your youngsters, head to IRS.gov now and fill out the non-filer info.
Now. Or by Sept. 30. Or Oct. 15.
You also might find these items of interest:
- Tax injured spouses to get catch-up COVID-19 payments
- IRS online tool helps non-filers apply for COVID-19 payments
- COVID-created tax refund interest payments going to nearly 14 million filers
|Coronavirus Caveat & More Information
In 2020, we're all dealing with extraordinary circumstances,
both in our daily lives and when it comes to our taxes.
The COVID-19 pandemic and efforts to reduce its transmission
and protect ourselves and our families means that,
for the most part, we're focusing on just getting through these trying days.
But life as we knew it before the coronavirus will return,
along with our mundane tax matters.
Here's hoping that happens soon!
In the meantime, you can find more on the virus and its effects on our taxes
by clicking Coronavirus (COVID-19) and Taxes.