How to Claim Your $500 Stimulus Payment From the IRS

As the fate of a second stimulus check remains hanging in limbo, the deadline is quickly approaching for some Americans to claim missing funds from their first stimulus payment. Six months after the first direct payments began being distributed, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) is working to distribute missing $500 payments for dependents under the age of 17, though those people eligible for the money will need to take action to claim the funds.

In order to claim the missing money, Americans are being encouraged to visit the Free File Fillable Forms site, which is accessible by clicking here. Once there, you will need to click “Get Started” and create an account. To use the tool, you will need to provide the following information: your full name, mailing and email address, date of birth, Social Security number, bank account number (if you have one), driver's license or state ID (if you have one), each qualifying child's Social Security number and their relationship to you. According to CNET, once you have finished, you will receive a confirmation email and your information will be sent to the IRS, allowing them to distribute the missing $500 funds should you be eligible.

Under the CARES Act, in addition to the $1,200 cap for single filers and up to $2,400 for couples filing jointly, dependents under the age of 17 were eligible for a $500 payment. In the rush to distribute payments as quickly as possible amid the economic crisis, however, the IRS encountered a number of issues, some of which affected this $500 payment. One issue involved a glitch on the IRS website that caused those who used the Non-Filers tool before May 17 to apply for their stimulus payment to not receive the $500 payment for their dependents. That glitch was later fixed and the IRS began sending out these missing payments last month.

Americans have until Sept. 30 to claim that missing funds via the Free File Fillable Forms site. Those who miss that deadline will have to wait until 2021. The IRS advises that those who intend to file a 2019 tax return (for instance, if you filed for an Oct. 15 extension) should not use the tool, as it could slow the process.

For those who do use the tool by the Sept. 30 deadline, the IRS has said that it will begin distributing these missing $500 payments in October. Those hoping to keep an eye on their payment can use the Get My Payment tool available on the IRS website. This tool, created in April as the IRS began distributing stimulus checks, allows users to check the status of their payment. The tool requires the input of your Social Security number, date of birth, home address, and ZIP code.