Questions and Answers about the Third Economic Impact Payment — Topic A: General Information

If you filed your 2020 tax return, no further action is needed. If you do not have a filing requirement for 2020 and you filed a 2019 tax return, or successfully used the Non-Filers tool on last year or are a federal benefit recipient and do not have a spouse or qualifying dependents that are new in 2020, you do not need to take any action. All others should file a 2020 tax return.

When you file your 2020 tax return, you may also be eligible to claim the 2020 Recovery Rebate Credit for your spouse and any qualifying children under age 17 at the end of 2020. See the special section on Claiming the 2020 Recovery Rebate Credit if you aren’t required to file a tax return.

If you don’t normally file a tax return and you need to file a federal tax return for 2020, anyone with no income or  income of $72,000 or less can file their Federal tax return electronically for free through the IRS Free File Program.

The IRS started processing payments on Friday, March 12, 2021. Some individuals saw the direct deposit payments as pending or as provisional payments in their accounts before the March 17 payment date. The first batch of payments primarily went to eligible taxpayers who provided direct deposit information on their 2019 or 2020 returns, including people who don't typically file a return but who successfully used the Non-Filers tool on last year.

Beginning March 19, IRS will issue payments based on 2020 and 2019 returns with and without direct deposit information on file. This process will continue throughout the year.

In addition, the IRS will automatically send payments to people who didn't file a return but receive Social Security retirement, survivor or disability benefits (SSDI), Railroad Retirement benefits (RRB), Supplemental Security Income (SSI) or Veterans Affairs (VA) benefits. Social Security and other federal beneficiaries will generally receive this third payment the same way as their regular benefits.

The IRS is working directly with the other federal agencies to obtain updated 2021 information for recipients to ensure we are sending automatic payments to as many people as possible. More information about when these payments will be made is provided in the news release issued on March 30, 2021 and the news release issued April 14, 2021. While payments will be automatic for beneficiaries based on their federal benefits information, some 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 their spouse and any qualified dependents. People in this group should file a 2020 tax return to be considered for an additional payment for their spouse and qualifying dependents.

IRS will also issue additional payments to those who received a third payment based on a 2019 tax return and who may be eligible for an additional amount based on their 2020 tax return.

You can check the status of your payment at

Yes, Get My Payment will show you when and how the third Economic Impact Payment was issued once the information is available. It will not provide the amount of the payment or whether you are eligible to receive the payment. You will see Payment Status Not Available until a payment is scheduled for you.

See Get My Payment FAQs for more information.

For most people Get My Payment will only provide the status of your third payment. See Get My Payment FAQs for more information.

Statuses include:

Payment Status:

  • A payment has been processed, a payment date is available, and payment is to be sent either by direct deposit or mail. Note: mail means you may be issued an EIP Card or a check.


  • You are eligible, but a payment has not been processed and a payment date is not available.

Payment Status Not Available:

  • If you get this message, either we have not yet determined your eligibility, or you are not eligible for a payment. We will continue to send the third Economic Impact Payment to eligible individuals throughout 2021.

If you see a status of ‘Need More Information’ in Get My Payment, it is because your third Economic Impact Payment was returned to the IRS because it could not be delivered. To have your payment reissued as a direct deposit, you can provide a routing and account number for a:

  • Bank account
  • Prepaid debit card (must be reloadable; contact the card issuer for information)
  • Alternative financial products that have a routing and account number associated with them

Simply click on the button that says, “Direct Deposit”, answer some additional security questions and then enter the routing and account number. Please note that this option is not available if we already have account information for you. The IRS cannot update existing account information.

If your check was returned to the IRS and your address has changed and you don’t provide banking information through Get My Payment, we can’t reissue your payment until your address is updated. See My address has changed or is incorrect. What can I do to change or correct it to receive my payment? 

Don’t have a bank account? Visit the FDIC website for information on where to find a bank that can open an account online and how to choose the right account for you. If you are a Veteran, see the Veterans Benefits Banking Program (VBBP)  for access to financial services at participating banks. You can also ask your preparer if they have offer other electronic payment options.

If you have a prepaid debit card, you may be able to have your refund applied to the card. Many reloadable prepaid cards or mobile payment apps have account and routing numbers that you could provide to the IRS. You would need to check with the financial institution to ensure your card can be used and to obtain the routing number and account number, which may be different from the card number.

Note: Any previously issued EIP debit card is not a reloadable card.

Yes, the IRS is  mailing Notice 1444-C, Your third Economic Impact Payment, to people who received a third Economic Impact Payment at the address we have on file for you.

Please keep any IRS notices/letters you receive related to the third round of Economic Impact Payments with your tax records. You may need to refer to it when you file your 2021 tax return in 2022.

No. Do not include the third Economic Impact Payment on your 2020 return that you are filing this year. The third Economic Impact Payment is an advance payment of tax year 2021 Recovery Rebate Credit. If you didn’t receive your payment yet, it doesn’t mean you won’t. The IRS is continuing to send payments throughout the year to eligible individuals.

If you didn’t get the first or second Economic Impact Payment or got less than the full amounts, you may qualify for the 2020 Recovery Rebate Credit and must file a 2020 tax return even if you don’t normally file.

If you need to file a federal tax return for 2020, anyone with no income or income of $72,000 or less can file their Federal tax return electronically for free through the IRS Free File Program.

No, Economic Impact Payments can’t be counted as income when determining if you or anyone else is eligible for benefits or assistance, or how much you or anyone else can receive, under any federal program or under any state or local program financed in whole or in part with federal funds. These programs also can’t count Economic Impact Payments as a resource for purposes of determining eligibility for a period of 12 months from receipt.

No. If your third payment was issued to an incorrect or closed account, the payment will be returned and the third payment will be reissued to your address of record.  You can check the status of your payment at when a payment is reissued, Get My Payment will reflect the date of the reissued  payment.