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April 20th Update: ACA working with contacts at IRS to resolve online “Get My Payment” problems

Many overseas Americans have encountered problems using the “Get My Payment” online tool the IRS has implemented for individuals who want to track their CARES Act recovery rebate payments and provide the IRS with US bank account information for direct deposit.  Users have encountered technical glitches and many are receiving error messages or messages indicating that their eligibility cannot be verified.  

The IRS has provided some additional information regarding the error message on the “Get My Payment” FAQ page. https://www.irs.gov/coronavirus/get-my-payment-frequently-asked-questions#elig.

Why am I getting "Payment Status Not Available"? (updated April 17, 2020)

The Get My Payment application will return "Payment Status Not Available" for several reasons, including:

  • You are required to file a tax return, but:
    • We haven't finished processing your 2019 return
    • The application doesn't yet have your data; we’re working on adding more data to allow more people to use it.
  • You don't usually file a return, and:
    • You used Non-Filers: Enter Payment Info Here but we haven’t processed your entry yet
    • You receive an SSA or RRB Form 1099 or SSI or VA benefits; information has not been loaded onto our systems yet for people who don’t normally file a tax return.
  • You’re not eligible for a payment.

We (IRS) update Get My Payment data once per day, overnight so there is no need to check more often. If you are eligible for a payment and have provided your information either through a recent tax return or the Non-Filers: Enter Payment Info Here application, please check back for updates.

 

ACA is working with our contacts at the IRS to get clarification on their statement “We haven’t finished processing your 2019 return,” as most individuals will not have filed a return given the extended deadlines for filing of July 15th. 
 
Additionally there is some confusion with language on the “Get My Payment” eligibility statement*. The text reads that you must be a US resident in order to receive the recovery rebates.  This does not mean that Americans overseas are not eligible for the rebates.  US citizens living overseas are eligible for the CARES Act recovery rebates as indicated on the IRS website 
“Economic Impact Payment Information Center”- see Question 31 here:

 


Q31. As a U.S. citizen living abroad, am I entitled to a Payment?

A31. Yes, U.S. citizens living outside the country are eligible for the Payment. Anyone eligible to file Form 1040 or Form 1040-SR is an eligible person if they have a valid SSN and can’t be claimed as a dependent of another taxpayer. Nonresident aliens who file or would file Form 1040-NR or Form 1040-NR-EZ are not eligible for the Payment.

Please note: for individuals who are already receiving Social Security benefits there is no need to register your bank account information for direct deposit. Question 4 on the “Economic Impact Payment Information Center” explains how these individuals’ payments will be processed:

 

Q4. I haven’t filed a tax return for 2018 or 2019 and don’t need to file tax returns for those years. I receive Social Security, SSI, or Railroad Retirement benefits. What do I need to do to get a Payment?

A4. You are not required to file a tax return and will automatically receive a $1,200 Payment if you received Social Security retirement, SSDI, survivors benefits, SSI, or Railroad Retirement benefits in 2019. You do not need to contact the IRS, Social Security Administration (SSA), or Railroad Retirement Board (RRB). The IRS will use the information from your 2019 benefits to generate a Payment to you if you did not file tax returns in 2018 or 2019. You will receive your Payment as a direct deposit or by mail, just as you would normally receive your federal benefits.

 

 
ACA will update the community on information as it becomes available.  Remember, if you are eligible for the recovery rebates and you wish to receive these payments via direct deposit into a US based bank account, ACA can help members with this through its offer of the ACA-Member/SDFCU account
.  This is a US-based bank account that can be opened online and without need of a US based residential address for verification purposes.  Visit ACA's website to learn more about the ACA-Member/SDFCU account
 
*When dealing with coronavirus recovery rebates, which is inherently a tax subject and may entail issues of tax compliance, readers should carefully consider their obligation to be tax compliant. There may be situations where they should consult a tax professional.  The ACA Expat Tax Services Directory
 is an important resource for information.