April 27, 2021

American Rescue Plan stimulus payments are STILL GOING OUT! More information here...

On Friday 23 April the IRS published a bulletin describing the 2 million payments they distributed in the 6th batch of Economic Impact Payments (EIPs) from the American Rescue Plan Act.  This is the U.S. Government's 3rd round of EIPs since the pandemic started: EIP1 = $1200 (Mar 2020); EIP2 = $600 (Dec 2020); EIP3 = $1400 (Feb 2021).  The IRS 23 April bulletin is copied in full at the very end of this post.

Democrats Abroad continues to hear from eligible Americans abroad waiting for their EIP(s) and wanting to contact the IRS.  The IRS has published this information about how to contact them from abroad.  The International Call Center contact numbers listed at this website, open Monday through Friday from 6am to 11pm Eastern time, are: 

Tel: 267-941-1000 (not toll-free)
Fax: 681-247-3101 (for international tax account issues only)

You have the best chance of being near the front of the queue if you begin dialing at 6am US Eastern time, though many have reported long wait times even if they started dialing early.

You might also try to reach the IRS with a question through your member of the House of Representatives.  Your Representative has constituent services officers, usually in the district office, to handle a range of constituent issues.  You can request that your Representative's Constituent Advocate access the Congressional Liaison to the IRS on your behalf.  You may be able to get in contact with the IRS in this way, though, again, many have reported to us that their outreach to constituent services staff was fruitless.  It's no magic bullet, but it is worth a try.  Here's how:

1.  If you do not know who your Representative is then use this link to find the name of your Representative by entering the zip code of your voting address.  

2.  Once you have the name of your Representative you can use this link to find the name of their Constituent Services Officers/Constituent Advocates.  Put your Rep's last name in the Search bar at the top of the page and hit return.  The search will produce a list of ALL of your Representatives staff members and their titles.  The staff member you are searching for will be identified as Constituent Advocate or Constituent Services Officer.  The phone number and email address of the Constituent Advocate is listed next to the person's name. 

Lastly, information about getting a pandemic aid payment and tax filing was the subject of a DA UK Webinar held last Thursday 22 April.  This is a recording of the Webinar, which might contain information helpful to you.

IRS Bulletin of Friday 23 April 2021

2 million more Economic Impact Payments disbursed under the American Rescue Plan; total reaches approximately 161 million as payments continue

WASHINGTON — Today, the Internal Revenue Service, the U.S. Department of the Treasury, and the Bureau of the Fiscal Service announced they are disbursing nearly 2 million payments in the sixth batch of Economic Impact Payments from the American Rescue Plan.

Today’s announcement brings the total disbursed so far to approximately 161 million payments, with a total value of more than $379 billion, since these payments began rolling out to Americans in batches as announced on March 12. 

The sixth batch of payments began processing on Friday, April 16, with an official payment date of April 21, with some people receiving direct payments in their accounts earlier as provisional or pending deposits. Here is additional information on this batch of payments:

  • In total, this batch includes nearly 2 million payments with a value of nearly $3.4 billion.
  • Nearly 700,000 payments, with a value of more than $1.3 billion, went to eligible individuals for whom the IRS previously did not have information to issue an Economic Impact Payment but who recently filed a tax return. 
  • This batch also includes additional ongoing supplemental payments for people who earlier this year received payments based on their 2019 tax returns but are eligible for a new or larger payment based on their recently processed 2020 tax returns. This batch included nearly 700,000 of these “plus-up” payments, with a value of nearly $1.2 billion.
  • Another 600,000 payments went to Social Security beneficiaries and Supplemental Security Income recipients, including those with foreign addresses.
  • Overall, this sixth batch of payments contains about 900,000 direct deposit payments (with a total value of $1.5 billion) and nearly 1.1 million paper check payments (with a total value of nearly $1.8 billion).

Additional information is available on the first five batches of Economic Impact Payments from the American Rescue Plan, which began processing on April 9April 2March 26March 19 and March 12.

The IRS will continue to make Economic Impact Payments on a weekly basis. Ongoing payments will be sent to eligible individuals for whom the IRS previously did not have information to issue a payment but who recently filed a tax return, as well to people who qualify for “plus-up” payments.

Special reminder for those who don't normally file a tax return

Although payments are automatic for most people, the IRS continues to urge people who don’t normally file a tax return and haven’t received Economic Impact Payments to file a 2020 tax return to get all the benefits they’re entitled to under the law, including tax credits such as the 2020 Recovery Rebate Credit, the Child Tax Credit, and the Earned Income Tax Credit.  Filing a 2020 tax return will also assist the IRS in determining whether someone is eligible for an advance payment of the 2021 Child Tax Credit, which will begin to be disbursed this summer.

For example, some federal benefits recipients may need to file a 2020 tax return – even if they don't usually file – to provide information the IRS needs to send payments for a qualifying dependent. Eligible individuals in this group should file a 2020 tax return as quickly as possible to be considered for an additional payment for their qualifying dependents.

People who don't normally file a tax return and don't receive federal benefits may qualify for these Economic Impact Payments. This includes those experiencing homelessness, the rural poor and others. Individuals who didn't get a first or second round Economic Impact Payment or got less than the full amounts may be eligible for the 2020 Recovery Rebate Credit, but they’ll need to file a 2020 tax return. See the special section on IRS.gov: Claiming the 2020 Recovery Rebate Credit if you aren't required to file a tax return.

Free tax return preparation is available for qualifying people.

The IRS reminds taxpayers that the income levels in this new round of Economic Impact Payments have changed. This means that some people won't be eligible for the third payment even if they received a first or second Economic Impact Payment or claimed a 2020 Recovery Rebate Credit. Payments will begin to be reduced for individuals making $75,000 or above in Adjusted Gross Income ($150,000 for married filing jointly). The payments end at $80,000 for individuals ($160,000 for married filing jointly); people with Adjusted Gross Incomes above these levels are ineligible for a payment.

Individuals can check the Get My Payment tool on IRS.gov to see the payment status of these payments. Additional information on Economic Impact Payments is available on IRS.gov.