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Why is my Economic Impact Payment amount different than anticipated?

Andy Baumruk

May 18, 2020


The IRS and Treasury have successfully delivered nearly 130 million Economic Impact Payments to Americans in less than a month, and more are on the way as millions of Americans are still waiting for that payment. To check the status of their check they can visit the ‘Get My Payment’ portal.

However, some Americans may have received a payment amount different than what they expected. Payment amounts vary based on income, filing status, and family size.

Below are some common scenarios that may explain why you received a different payment amount than expected:

  1. You have not filed a 2019 tax return, or the IRS has not finished processing your 2019 return.
  2. Claimed dependents are not eligible for an additional $500 payment.
  3. Dependents are college students.
  4. Claimed dependents are parents or relatives, age 17 or older.
  5. Past-due child support was deducted from the payment.
  6. Garnishment by creditors reduced the payment amount.

What if the amount is incorrect?

Everyone should review the eligibility requirements for their family to make sure they meet the criteria.

In many instances, eligible taxpayers who received a smaller-than-expected Economic Impact Payment (EIP) may qualify to receive an additional amount early next year when they file their 2020 federal income tax return. EIPs are technically an advance payment of a new temporary tax credit that eligible taxpayers can claim on their 2020 return. Everyone should keep for their records the letter they receive by mail within a few weeks after their payment is issued.

Click here to view the full IRS.gov article

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