CORONAVIRUS STIMULUS CHECKS

$1,400 stimulus checks: will there be payments for social security beneficiaries?

As millions of Americans see $1,400 stimulus payments arrive beneficiaries of social security and veterans are left wondering where their payments are.

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$1,400 stimulus checks: will there be payments for social security beneficiaries?
ERIC BARADAT AFP

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) began sending out payments the day after President Joe Biden signed the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA). Over 90 million payments hit bank accounts on 17 March with a second batch to be deposited on Wednesday.

Yet one group that is in urgent need of the $1,400 payments is still waiting for the financial assistance. Social Security, Supplemental Security Income, Railroad Retirement Board and Veterans beneficiaries are baffled why it's taking the tax agency more time to deliver the checks to them than to others.

Congress demands answers for delay in $1,400 stimulus payments

Lawmakers have become concerned with the delay in distributing stimulus payments to Social Security recipients and other federal aid beneficiaries. Members of the House Ways & Means Committee sent a letter on Monday to IRS Commissioner Chuck Rettig and Social Security Administration Commissioner Andrew Saul looking for answers.

“The American Rescue Plan was intended to provide much-needed economic stimulus and assistance to people across the country – immediately – and we are counting on your agencies to ensure that beneficiaries are not left behind in the seamless delivery of those payments,” the letter read.

The lawmakers expressed concern stating “Some of our most vulnerable seniors and persons with disabilities, including veterans who served our country with honor, are unable to pay for basic necessities while they wait for their overdue payments.”

What does the IRS say about delays for social security beneficiaries?

The IRS is set to deposit another batch of payments directly into bank accounts on Wednesday in addition to sending paper checks and preloaded EIP debit cards. Whether $1,400 payments for these federal beneficiaries and their dependents will be in this wave is unclear. According to the letter the IRS hasn't specified a timetable for when federal beneficiaries might get their stimulus checks.

Both agencies have until Friday 26 March to produce a schedule for when the stimulus payments will be sent to Social Security recipients and others on government assistance. In the statement the lawmakers pressed the agencies to make haste saying “We urge the IRS and SSA to move with all deliberate speed to quickly issue these payments to Social Security and SSI beneficiaries – and we urge the IRS to work with the RRB and VA to pay those beneficiaries expeditiously as well.”

How to find out how and when your third stimulus payment will arrive

The quickest way to check your payment and how it is coming is to go to the IRS Get My Payment tool where you can track your payment. The tool will let you know how and when you will receive your payment. The IRS will continue to issue the EIP stimulus payments throughout 2021. The IRS only updates the Get My Payment tool information once per day, typically overnight, so refreshing throughout the day won’t yield any new information.

When you use Get My Payment, you’ll see one of the following messages:

  • Payment Status: Will inform you that your payment has been processed or that you are eligible for a stimulus payment but it hasn’t been processed yet. If your payment has been processed, the portal will tell you when to expect it and whether it will be sent by mail or by direct deposit, but it will not tell you how much to look forward to receiving.
  • Payment Status Not Available: The IRS still hasn’t determined whether you are eligible or not. It may be the IRS is missing information to finish the determination. The IRS recommends filing a tax return this year even if you don’t normally have to.
  • Need More Information: This message means that your payment was returned to the IRS because the Postal Service was unable to deliver it. You will need to update your information with the agency so they can reissue the payment. There is more information on this at the end of the article.

For other questions when troubleshooting problems with your third stimulus check payment the IRS provides a helpful Get My Payment Frequently Asked Questions.

Third stimulus check: latest updates

You can get the latest information on the third stimulus check, and updates on the possibility of a fourth direct payment, by following our dedicated live blog.

You'll also find news on other provisions in Biden’s economic-aid package, such as an enhanced child tax credit that offers qualifying families up to $3,000 per child aged six to 17, and $3,600 per child below six.