Taxpayers Could Miss Out Of $1.5 Billion In Stimulus Checks: Final Deadline Looms On July 17 

Stimulus Check

The Internal Revenue Service has sent its final reminder to around 1.5 million to collect their unclaimed stimulus checks from 2019. And for those who have not filed their taxes over the past few years, the final chance to claim old refunds is fast closing. Around $1.5 billion lies unclaimed, the federal tax agency has estimated. And the final chance to file and collect the refund form 2019 is around a week away on July 17.

Normally there is a 3-year deadline to claim all your refunds for income tax returns that have not been filed. After that, you cannot claim the money as it becomes the property of the US Dept. of the Treasury. In most years, this deadline falls on the federal income tax filing deadline. But due to the COVID-19 pandemic, extra time has been given for the 2019 pending stimulus checks. 

stimulus check

The 2019 tax returns came due during the pandemic, and most people were too diverted in saving themselves from the pandemic. Thus, millions forgot or overlooked to file the returns and collect the refunds. This was stated by Danny Werfel, the IRS commissioner. He further said that taxpayers should claim these pending tax refunds. He reminded people that the time for collecting the stimulus check is running out.

The deadline for the 2019 income tax return has been extended to July. The agency’s commissioner said that low and moderate-earning Americans and students in particular have missed out on filing the 2019 income tax returns.  Most non-filers and first-timers are apprehensive that the filing process is way tougher than it actually is. And what they fail to realize is that by doing so they are leaving money on the table. 

There is still a significant sum of money that has not been claimed in the form of stimulus checks. And these amounts could be higher than $10,000 for many households. 

Claiming The Stimulus Checks

For instance, low and moderate-income workers may qualify for the Earned Income Tax Credit. You can still benefit from a tax break with the stimulus check, regardless of whether you owe any taxes. 

And for workers who have a relatively simple tax filing task ahead of them, especially those with a W-2 income and without a business. In such a case filing your income tax returns is quite a simple task. 

Experts say that the first task for filing documents is to get all your documents in order. Taxpayers can ask for copies of tax documents from employers and various sources like loan service providers. At times documents have been provided electronically and are still available on demand. Older tax documents can also be accessed through your online account with the IRS. 

You will need to log in to the IRS website to access and download your documents. It includes the wage and income transcript, including W-2s and 1099s. You can access IRS transcripts for up to three prior seasons. For most taxpayers, this is the quickest and easiest option to get most of your old documents quickly. 

If your pending income tax returns are running into years, it is advisable to just start with 2019 at this stage. It is always daunting to handle multiple years at a time. Completing just 2019 is way far easier to move on to the next year. 

The chief of the IRS has said that those who have overlooked filing their 2019 income tax returns during the early stages of COVID-19 in 2020 should move quickly. They stand to lose potential stimulus checks worth thousands. 

Filers have already got more time than usual to claim their refunds for the 2019 tax year. This has been due to the extension allowed by the federal tax agency. The deadline has been extended a few months past the normal 3-year filing window and pushed back to mid-July this year. 

There are thousands who have failed to file their income tax return in every state and collect their unclaimed stimulus check. Among the states with the highest number of individuals who are estimated to have failed to collect their stimulus checks include California with an estimated figure of 150,000, Texas with 135,000, Florida with close to 100,000, and New York with over 81,000.

IRS Issues Notice On Getting Stimulus Check And Obtaining Documents

The IRS has pointed out that filers have several options to claim their stimulus checks and get their documents. People should start immediately to gather the necessary information to file their income tax returns. 

Taxpayers can request copies of all vital documents. Filers who are missing Forms W-2, 1098, 1099, and 5498 for any period since 2019 can apply to the IRS and request copies. They can also get them from their employers, banks, loan providers, and other payers. 

stimulus check CalWorks

Filers can also order an income or wage transcript for free from their employer or other agencies or from the official IRS website. They need to use the Get Transcript Online tool. In most cases, this is by far the easiest way in which you can get your stimulus check. 

Taxpayers who fail to file before the deadline stand to lose way more than their tax refunds that were paid or withheld since 2019. There are other stimulus checks like the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC). Many workers in the low and moderate-income categories are eligible for it, and it was worth as much as $6,557 in 2019. 

The EITC supports both families and individual filers with income that is below a stipulated threshold for every year. Filers filing individuals with income below $50,162 and with three or more children are eligible for the EITC. For married couples filing jointly, the maximum income allowable for the EITC stimulus check is $55,952.

The corresponding figures for people with two children are $46,702 and $52,493. For those with one qualifying child, the figure is $41,094 and $46,884. Families without qualifying children are eligible for the EITC stimulus check if their individual income is below $15,570 and $21,370 if filing jointly.