Finally—after weeks of delays—an estimated 30 million social security recipients eligible for a third round of relief checks will receive their payments in April. The new timeline affects those who receive SSI, SSDI, Railroad Retirement, or Veterans Affairs benefits. Here’s a look at timelines and how to track your payments, if you qualify.
Expect payments by April 7, for most programs
The IRS announced Tuesday that they’ll begin sending checks out this weekend, and that the majority of these payments will be sent electronically on April 7, either through a direct deposit or on existing Direct Express debit cards. The one exception is for Veteran Affairs recipients, as the IRS expects their payments to be disbursed by mid-April.
Some social security recipients have already received their payments, however, including those who used the Non-Filers tool last year (the tool is for very low-income earners that don’t normally need to file taxes) or have already filed their 2019 or 2020 tax returns.
Why were payments delayed?
Eligibility for the third round of stimulus checks is most commonly based on 2019 or 2020 tax returns. However, since many Social Security and SSI recipients don’t file tax returns, the IRS had to get eligibility information from the Social Security Administration, which oversees these entitlement programs, according to Kiplinger. However, that transfer was delayed for almost two weeks, which led to four Democrat Congressmen writing a letter to the SSA asking them to expedite the transfer of payment files, which they did the following day.
How can I track my payments?
You can use the IRS’ Get My Payment tool to track your payment, although it won’t be updated for federal social security beneficiaries until this weekend (for more information on using the tool, check out this Lifehacker post). Also, note that due to a quirk in relief legislation, the latest round of stimulus checks can be seized by private debt collectors, but not from past-due child support (which was the case with previous checks).