How to track your IRS stimulus check with the Get My Payment portal


The IRS started sending coronavirus stimulus checks in April.

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Starting the middle of April, the IRS has been sending stimulus checks to Americans as part of the CARES Act. The IRS has made tens of millions of payments in less than two months — including to those who receive Social Security, disability and Supplemental Security Income benefits — but if you’re still waiting for your check, you may be increasingly concerned about the status of your payment. (Here are nine reasons your check may be delayed or might not arrive at all.)

To help, the IRS has a stimulus check tracker that can show you the status of your payment, including how the agency will deliver your money — in the mail as a prepaid debit card or a check, or as a direct deposit to your bank account? We’ll show how to use the IRS’ Get My Payment tracker portal to get an update on your 2020 check. 

Using the tool isn’t hard. You’ll just have to enter some specific information and spend a few minutes online to get the status of your coronavirus relief money. After tracking your payment status with the IRS, you might also consider signing up for the US Postal Service app that will actually notify you when your payment will arrive in the mail, complete with a photo of your envelope.

The IRS’ Get My Payment app has been known to turn up some common problems. Many have been fixed, but if you run into trouble, it’s a good note to keep in mind. And if you’re wondering about a second round of stimulus checks, here’s what we know so far. This story updates often with the latest news.

Read more: Where to buy face masks online if you don’t want to make your own


Is the stimulus check here yet? How about now? But what about now?

Sarah Tew/CNET

How to track the status and arrival of your stimulus check from the IRS 

If you’re eligible for a check, the IRS lets you track your your payment schedule through its Get My Payment web portal. Some people have reported having trouble using the portal, and the IRS said it has significantly improved the Get My Payment app to help you set up and track the date of your stimulus payment.

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Stimulus Checks Helpline


1. Head to the IRS’ Get My Payment page and tap the blue Get My Payment button to check the status of your economic impact payment. 

2. On the next page about authorized use, tap OK.

3. Now on the Get My Payment page, enter your Social Security number (SSN) or Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN), your date of birth, your street address and your ZIP or postal code. Tap Continue.

On the next page, the portal will show your payment status, whether it’s been scheduled or if the service can’t yet determine your status.

How do I know if my check is in the mail?

In April, the IRS began transferring the first stimulus payments to the accounts of tens of millions of US residents who’ve set up direct deposit with the government. But not everyone gets an electronic transfer. 

The Treasury Department said it’s sending 4 million Economic Impact Payment, or EIP, prepaid debit cards to some who qualify for a payment. You’re likely to get one if the government doesn’t have your banking information. For others, the IRS is sending checks in the mail. We’ve asked the US Treasury to clarify who gets a check and who gets debit card.

Till all the checks go out, the Get My Payment app can tell you when your payment will be issued and how. The IRS will also mail you letter about 15 days after it issues your payment, with information on the amount you received and how you received it.

How do I know that my status information is accurate and what if I get an error message?

Unfortunately, you may see confusing messages when using the status tool — so much so that the IRS explains common status messages in an FAQ. You may get a message if it’s impossible to determine your eligibility, for example, or your payment status is not available. We’re looking into it, but so far we’ve unearthed a handful of reasons why Get My Payment may not be able to track your payment status. 

The IRS once a day updates its status tracking information on who has and hasn’t received a payment. 

You don’t need to sign up to receive stimulus money

To receive the stimulus payment, you may need to file a tax return for 2018 or 2019 if you are normally required to. You can still do that now. Here’s how.

Senior citizens, Social Security recipients, railroad retirees and other beneficiaries who typically aren’t required to file tax returns will not need to file one to receive a payment.

Again, the agency will mail a letter to a taxpayer’s last known address within 15 days after sending the payment. The letter will contain information on when and how the payment was made and how to report to the IRS if you didn’t receive your check. 

For more on the stimulus checks, here’s how best to use your stimulus check. Here’s everything you need to know about the coronavirus and unemployment.