To claim a missing stimulus check payment on your taxes, you’ll need this – CNET

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You claim your missing payment in tax season.


Sarah Tew/CNET

If you’re still missing your stimulus money — either the first one or the second stimulus check— you’ll need to claim the amount you qualify for as a “Recovery Rebate Credit” (here’s how you do it) when you file your file your federal taxes during the upcoming tax season.

To do that, you’ll also need to reference some specific information printed in a letter the IRS mailed to you after making your stimulus payment. That’s as soon as tax season opens on Feb. 12. This is a letter you would have received if the IRS sent you — or attempted to send — some amount of your allotted stimulus check money, and you believe you’re owed more.

But what if you don’t have the letter, either because you didn’t receive it, misplaced it or didn’t realize you’d need to keep it and threw it away? We’ll explain exactly how to get a copy. Here’s also more information on how to file for the stimulus credit, why you want to file your taxes early and set up direct deposit when you do, and everything a new stimulus bill could contain, including a new stimulus check.

What are Notice 1444 and 1444-B and how do you use them?

Within 15 days after the IRS issued your first and second payments — if you qualified for stimulus money — the agency would have mailed to your last known address a notice with your information on the payment. For the first payment, the IRS would have sent you Notice 1444 and for the second, Notice 1444-B. 

The IRS said you’ll use the information from these notices to claim money you were eligible to receive, but didn’t, when you file for taxes this year. Here’s more information on using the Recovery Rebate Credit Worksheet to figure out the credit you can claim on your taxes. You’ll essentially enter the total amount you determine you’re owed on line 30 of the 2020 1040 or 1040-SR tax forms.


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Second stimulus checks: Everything you need to know

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How do I find the information on my IRS notice if I no longer have the letter?

If you don’t have the IRS confirmation notice, you can find the information on your federal tax account, using the IRS website. 

If you don’t have an account set up with the IRS, head to the IRS account page and tap the blue button that says Create or view your account to get started.

You’ll need to have some information on hand to set up your account, including tax and financial information, plus an email address and mobile phone number to receive activation codes.

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The IRS has sent out two rounds of stimulus payments.


Sarah Tew/CNET

What if the online tool doesn’t work?

The online registration process can take about 15 minutes. During the process, IRS will email and text two different activation codes. If the codes don’t come through, the agency will mail you a letter with an activation code, which can take 5 to 10 days to get to you. If you want to track the letter, you can use this free service from the USPS.

Once your new online account is set up with the IRS, you can check for the information contained in the letter. If your stimulus payment information is not available when you check, the IRS said it should be in the coming weeks.

For more information on tax season and your stimulus check, here’s what you need to know about tax deadlines, why you want to file early and how to estimate the size of your second check. (You can also estimate the size of your next stimulus check.)