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Apologies for the lengthy post. I'm been confounded the past 2-3 days by the confusing information I'm getting from the IRS's FAQ page and their Stimulus "Get My Payment" Tracking tool. I believe I am eligible for the Stimulus checks, making less than $75,000 on my 2018 taxes, which were filed and paid for by direct deposit.

I go to the tool. I enter in my SSN, birth day, street address, and zip code as it appears on my 2018 tax forms. The page then shows:

Payment Status Not Available

According to information that we have on file, we cannot determine your eligibility for a payment at this time.

For more information on the eligibility rules, see our Frequently Asked Questions page.

I follow the link, and it brings me to:

Why am I getting "Payment Status Not Available"?

In certain cases, the Get My Payment app will be unable to tell you the status of your payment. You may receive this message for one of the following reasons:

  • If you are not eligible for a payment (see IRS.gov on who is eligible and who is not eligible)
  • If you are required to file a tax return and have not filed in tax year 2018 or 2019.
  • If you recently filed your return or provided information through Non-Filers: Enter Your Payment Info on IRS.gov. Your payment status will be updated when processing is completed.
  • If you are a SSA or RRB Form 1099 recipient, SSI or VA benefit recipient – the IRS is working with your agency to issue your payment; your information is not available in this app yet.

You can check the app again to see whether there has been an update to your information. Get My Payment data is updated once per day, so there’s no need to check back more frequently.

My response to the above:

  1. I am eligible. My 2018 taxes stated an income less than the $75,000 required to receive the $1200.
  2. I filed for 2018. I haven't filed my 2019 taxes yet. I have friends who haven't filed yet who received a deposit.
  3. I have not recently filed. I was waiting to file close the deadline, which has now been extended. I have not provided information through the "Non-Filers" section.
  4. I don't receive SSA/RRB/SSI or VA benefits.

So, finally, my question is this - why is it claiming "Payment Status Not Available" and who could I contact to actually see why this is the case, and what can I do to rectify this (while not incurring the "rath" of the IRS)?

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    Following this question, did you file 2018 taxes and receive a refund, or file 2018 taxes and make a final payment? – user4556274 Apr 17 '20 at 14:00
  • @user4556274: I made a final payment. I didn't receive a refund in 2018 and I shouldn't for 2019 either. – James Haug Apr 17 '20 at 14:17
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There are reports some some people think the IRS has their banking information but they really don't have it.

If you pay your fees to the software company in the same transaction you file a return with a payment for refund, the IRS is only given temporary banking info from the vendor so that the payment/refund can be processed.

For example owe the IRS $300 and owe Turbo Tax $49 for the software. Turbo Tax pulls $349 from your bank account and sends $300 to the IRS. The IRS doesn't even see your banking information. It could be worse They could have sent the $1200 to Turbo Tax.

while I mention Turbo Tax it is more than just Turbo Tax: Glitches prevent $1,200 stimulus checks from reaching millions of Americans

Customers who use tax preparation services such as H&R Block, TurboTax and Jackson Hewitt complained on Twitter and to The Post that they didn’t get their stimulus payments Wednesday.

Up to 21 million tax filers could be affected, said consumer law expert Vijay Raghavan, because the IRS does not have these people’s direct deposit information on file if they received an advance on their tax refund from these companies or had the fee for tax preparation taken out of their tax refund.

The reason is that tax preparation companies received these people’s tax refunds first, deducted their fees and then distributed the remaining refunds to the customers. Because of that, the IRS had a “temporary bank account” on file that the tax preparer created for the 2019 tax season, Raghavan said.

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  • Interesting. That might explain it, when looking at other comments/answers. I used TaxAct to file, so they must've done the same as Turbo Tax in your answer. I'm not sure if that's the correct answer yet, however. – James Haug Apr 17 '20 at 14:20
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    This doesn't appear to be the right answer. The error message is about eligibility. If you read the FAQ on the IRS's website, it says there is a different message if they are missing payment information. – Robert Columbia Apr 17 '20 at 17:53
  • It this is the case then How IRS pay those ppl who doing tax thru the software? Do they treat those ppl as no direct deposit info and send the check via mail ? – K DAO Apr 17 '20 at 22:09
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    @RobertColumbia: I'm pretty sure that the error message is not to be taken literally, but is really just a catch-all error message meaning "something went wrong somewhere". I'm not defending poor programming, but they did this in a hurry, and didn't really have time to get it 100% foolproof. – Marty Fried Apr 17 '20 at 22:58

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