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Didn't get $500 stimulus check for your children? IRS says to apply now

People excluded from first stimulus checks speak out
People excluded from first stimulus checks sp... 02:19

Some Social Security recipients and other federal benefit recipients whose children didn't receive a $500 stimulus payment will have another chance to collect the payment, according to the IRS.

The tax agency said Friday that it's reopening its online registration on August 15 and will keep the website open until September 30. People who may be eligible for the stimulus money will need to visit the IRS "Non-Filers tool" and enter information about their children to secure the payments, which it expects to issue by mid-October. 

The stimulus checks — authorized under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act and designed to help families weather the economic crisis caused by the pandemic — had a bumpy liftoff. Although most taxpayers got their stimulus checks via direct deposit within weeks, many households faced delays in receiving their funds. Among them are people who don't file federal income tax returns, including some Social Security recipients and low-income households. 

So far, more than 160 million payments have been sent by the IRS, according to the agency.

"We are allocating additional IRS resources to ensure eligible recipients receive their full payments during this challenging time," IRS commissioner Chuck Rettig said in a statement on Friday.

The agency said that recipients of Social Security, Supplementary Security Income, Department of Veterans Affairs and Railroad Retirement Board benefits who have already provided information on their children via the Non-Filers tool don't need to reenter the data. It added they'll automatically receive the $500 per child in October. 

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The stimulus checks consisted of $1,200 for single taxpayers earning less than $75,000 annually and $2,400 for married couples earning less than $150,000. Children under 17 were given $500 each. The IRS largely relied on bank account data or addresses included in taxpayers' annual returns in directing the payments — a hurdle when it came to sending the checks to the millions of Americans who don't file taxes. 

To help redress such issues, the IRS set up the Non-Filers site to collect information from people who don't normally file taxes on where to send the money. 

Who shouldn't use the website?

Not everyone should use the Non-Filers tool. As the name implies, it's only for people who don't file tax returns — that means people who have, or plan to file, either a 2018 or 2019 return shouldn't use the site, according to the IRS.

As noted above, people who qualify to use the website and have already entered their data don't need to re-enter it, the IRS said.

What if you miss the September 30 deadline?

Unfortunately, those who miss the deadline to use the website will have to wait until next year to claim the $500 checks, when they can claim the stimulus as a credit on their 2020 income tax return. 

As far as the chances of receiving a second stimulus check, it's unclear whether that will occur anytime soon given that Republicans and Democrats in Congress remain far apart on reaching a deal. 

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