IRS and Treasury to stop sending stimulus checks this week

The IRS and U.S. Treasury Department will stop sending out stimulus checks this week, but there are still ways you can claim the money if you don’t receive it automatically.

Legislation providing for the $600 payments, which was approved by lawmakers at the end of last month, stipulated that the departments needed to issue all payments by Friday.

Individuals who are eligible but do not automatically receive their payment by direct deposit, paper check or mailed prepaid debit card will be able to claim the cash when they file their 2020 tax returns. These people should claim the Recovery Rebate Credit when they file.

You can check the status of your payment by using the IRS’ Get My Payment tool.

The IRS has yet to announce a state date for tax season, but it typically starts sometime around the end of January.

It was not made clear why lawmakers included the cutoff date, which gave the IRS and Treasury just several weeks to distribute hundreds of thousands of $600 economic impact payments. However, it likely has to do with the fact that the IRS is running up against tax season, which will soon need its full attention.

On its website, the agency noted that it was working hard to get payments out to as many eligible households as possible, "while still preparing for the 2021 filing season."

Individuals earning up to $75,000, or $150,000 for married couples, are eligible for the second round of direct payments. Households are eligible for an additional $600 per qualifying child.

Beyond those income thresholds, the payments would begin to phase out at a rate of $5 per $100 of additional income.

Individuals earning more than $87,000 and married couples earning more than $174,000 are ineligible for payments.

The government began mailing paper checks and issuing direct deposits at the beginning of the month.

It began sending prepaid debit cards to an expected 8 million recipients last week.