What Happens to Your Stimulus Check When the IRS Has Wrong Bank Info?

A photo of the economic stimulus check that was sent to US citizens during the covid-19/coronavirus quarantine.
LPETTET / Getty Images/iStockphoto

Millions of American have already received the third, and likely last, round of stimulus payments. In the event you’re eligible for the check but haven’t received it yet, the reason could be incorrect bank account information. Here’s what that means and what you might be able to do about it.

See: Haven’t Received Your Third Stimulus Check? Call the IRS Phone Number and Tell Them
Find: Stimulus Forecast — Latest Jobs Data Makes a Fourth Check Less Likely

The IRS states that if your bank account information has changed or was incorrect, you will not be able to simply update it in the Get My Payment tool. Instead, the bank will return your payment to the IRS, and then the IRS will mail you the payment by check at the address it already has on file for you.

The easiest way to update an old or incorrect address is to file your 2020 tax return with your current address if you have not already done so, according to the IRS. The fastest way to do this is to file electronically.

To get your payment reissued, the IRS advises to set up direct deposit with Get My Payment. Once the original payment has been returned to the IRS, you will likely see a “Need More Information” message in the Get My Payment portal. From there, you can choose direct deposit to a bank account, prepaid debit card or alternative financial product that has a routing and account number associated with it.

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See: Poll: 45% of Respondents Needed to Pay Bills With Stimulus Check
Find: Pandemic Relief Programs Are Ending — Here’s How You Can Still Get Assistance

Important to note: your bank account information in Get My Payment cannot be changed. The IRS says the bank account information in that tool came from one of the following sources:

  • Your 2020 tax return
  • Your 2019 tax return, if your 2020 return was not processed when the IRS started issuing payments
  • Information you entered on your Non-Filer registration in 2020
  • Information you entered on Get My Payment in 2020
  • A federal agency that provides you with benefits, such as the Social Security Administration, Veteran Affairs or the Railroad Retirement Board
  • Federal records of recent payments to or from the government, where available, for those without direct deposit information on file with the IRS

This means that you will have to go directly back to one of these sources to change your bank account information. Again, the easiest way to do this is to simply file your taxes, or use the Non-Filer tool if you do not file taxes, to update your information

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About the Author

Georgina Tzanetos is a former financial advisor who studied post-industrial capitalist structures at New York University. She has eight years of experience with concentrations in asset management, portfolio management, private client banking, and investment research. Georgina has written for Investopedia and WallStreetMojo. 

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