If you qualify for a stimulus check, direct deposit will get your money to you faster

MoMo Productions/DigitalVision/GettyMost people will get their stimulus check by direct deposit.
  • You will get a stimulus check if you have a Social Security number, are not claimed as a dependent on someone else’s tax return, and earn below certain income thresholds for your filing status.
  • Stimulus payments have already started hitting bank accounts of people who filed taxes in 2018 and 2019.
  • If the IRS doesn’t have your direct-deposit information, you need to provide it online or wait for a paper check in the mail.
  • People who receive federal benefits, such as Social Security, will get payments delivered to their regular account or address by early May.
  • Read more personal finance coverage.

Americans who qualify for a stimulus check during the coronavirus crisis do not have to sign up for anything. If you get an email, phone call, or social media message asking you to sign up, it’s probably a scam.

The IRS started sending out direct deposits last week to tens of millions of people. Keep in mind that the money is not taxable as income and won’t affect any tax refund or federal benefits you’re entitled to.

To get a payment, you must have a Social Security number. If you’re married to someone who doesn’t have a Social Security number and file taxes jointly, neither of you will get a stimulus check. Adult dependents, including some seniors and college students whose parents pay more than half of their expenses, are not eligible for payments.

The IRS has said that it will be able to deliver the stimulus money – or “economic impact payments” – by direct deposit much faster than mailing paper checks, and has urged people to submit bank information. If you don’t, the IRS will mail you a check.

You can check the status of your payment using the “Get My Payment” tool on the IRS website. If you’re receiving an error message, there are a few reasons your payment could be delayed.

Will I get my stimulus check?

If you file taxes

If you filed taxes in 2018 or 2019, the most recent tax return must reflect an adjusted gross income below $US99,000 for single filers, $US136,500 for heads of household, and $US198,000 for married filers to get a stimulus check.

Many people who file taxes are being paid via direct deposit in April. If the last tax return you filed was for 2018 and it didn’t include bank information, then you’ll be sent a paper check unless you file a 2019 tax return and provide direct-deposit details.

If you file taxes but don’t usually get a tax refund, the IRS won’t have your direct-deposit information, even if you paid your tax bill through direct bank transfer. You’ll need to use the “Get My Payment” tool on the IRS website to enter bank details.

Note that if you’ve moved, and you haven’t provided the IRS with direct-deposit information, the agency will send a paper check to the address on your most recent tax return or change of address filed with USPS.

If you didn’t file taxes in 2018 or 2019

If you had no tax liability in 2018 or 2019 and didn’t file a tax return, the process for getting your payment is slightly different.

If you didn’t file taxes in 2018 or 2019 and are not claimed as a dependent, but do get Social Security payments, either for retirement or disability, Railroad Retirement benefits, Supplemental Security Income (SSI), or Veterans Affairs benefits, the government will use that information to send an automatic payment.

You’ll get the full $US1,200 sent to the same bank account, Direct Express card, or address where you normally receive benefits. In most cases, the money will be delivered “no later than early May,” according to a Treasury Department news release.

If you have dependents who qualify for the additional $US500 payment, use the non-filers tool on the IRS website to enter their information ASAP.

If you didn’t file taxes in the past two years because you didn’t have a federal tax liability and don’t receive federal benefits, you should also use the non-filers tool to claim your stimulus check.

Business Insider Emails & Alerts

Site highlights each day to your inbox.

Follow Business Insider Australia on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram.