VA, SSI Recipients with Eligible Children Need to Act by May 5 to Quickly Add Money to Their Automatic Economic Impact Payment (IR-2020-81)

  • Their $1,200 payments will be issued soon and, in order to add the $500 per eligible child amount to these payments, the IRS needs the dependent information before the payments are issued.
  • Otherwise, their payment at this time will be $1,200 and, by law, the additional $500 per eligible child amount will be paid in association with a return filing for tax year 2020.
  • Social Security Administration and Railroad Retirement beneficiaries who don’t normally file a tax return and have a child but did not register on the IRS Non-Filers tool by April 22, they will still receive their automatic $1,200 beginning next week. Given the deadline has passed, by law, the additional $500 per eligible child amount would be paid in association with filing a tax return for 2020. This group can no longer use the Non-Filers tool to add eligible children.

The Internal Revenue Service today issued a special alert for Supplemental Security Income and Department of Veterans Affairs beneficiaries to act by May 5 if they didn’t file a tax return in 2018 or 2019 and have dependents so they can quickly receive the full amount of their Economic Impact Payment.

Their $1,200 payments will be issued soon and, in order to add the $500 per eligible child amount to these payments, the IRS needs the dependent information before the payments are issued. Otherwise, their payment at this time will be $1,200 and, by law, the additional $500 per eligible child amount will be paid in association with a return filing for tax year 2020.

“We want to ‘Plus $500’ these groups so they can get their maximum Economic Impact Payment of $1,200 and their $500 for each eligible child as quickly as possible,” said IRS Commissioner Chuck Rettig. “They’ll get $1,200 automatically, but they need to act quickly and use the Non-Filers tool on IRS.gov to get the extra $500 per child added to their payment. Everyone should share this information widely and help others with the Plus $500 Push, so that more Americans get more money as fast as possible.”

Following extensive work by the IRS and partner government agencies, $1,200 automatic payments will be starting soon for those receiving Social Security retirement, survivor or disability benefits (SSDI), Railroad Retirement benefits, Supplemental Security Income (SSI) and VA Compensation and Pension (C&P) beneficiaries who didn’t file a tax return in the last two years. No action is needed by these groups; they will automatically receive their $1,200 payment.

For VA and SSI recipients who have a qualifying child and didn’t file a 2018 or 2019 tax return, they have a limited window to register to have $500 per eligible child added automatically to their soon-to-be-received $1,200 Economic Impact Payment. A quick trip to a special Non-Filers tool on IRS.gov by May 5 for these groups may help put all of their eligible Economic Income Payment into a single payment. The Non-Filers tool is available in English and Spanish.

To help spread the word to recipients with children about this special “Plus $500 Push,” the IRS has additional material available on a special partners page that can be shared with friends, family members and community groups.

SSI and VA recipients: Have a child but don’t file a tax return? Visit IRS.gov now 

SSI and VA recipients who have children and who weren’t required file a tax return in 2018 or 2019 should visit the Non-Filers: Enter Payment Info Here tool on IRS.gov. By quickly taking steps to enter information on the IRS website about them and their qualifying children, they can receive the $500 per dependent child payment automatically in addition to their $1,200 individual payment. Otherwise, their payment at this time will be $1,200 and, by law, the additional $500 per eligible child amount would be paid in association with a return filing for tax year 2020.

SSI and VA recipients who receive Compensation and Pension (C&P) benefit payments should receive their automatic payments by mid-May. If they have children and aren’t required to file a tax return, both groups are urged to use the Non-Filers tool as soon as possible before the May 5 deadline. Once the deadline passes and processing begins on the $1,200 payment, they will not be eligible to use the Non-Filers tool to add eligible children. Their payment will be $1,200 and, by law, the additional $500 per eligible child amount would be paid in association with a return filing for tax year 2020.

SSA / Railroad Retirees: Economic Impact Payments arriving next week 

For recipients of Social Security retirement, survivors or disability insurance benefits (SSDI) and Railroad Retirement benefits (RRB), automatic payments of $1,200 are scheduled to begin arriving next week. No action is needed on their part. This includes people who don’t normally file a tax return.

For Social Security / RRB beneficiaries who don’t normally file a tax return, have a child and registered using the IRS Non-Filers tool by the April 22 deadline, more payments are scheduled to begin arriving next week as well.

For SSA/RRB beneficiaries who don’t normally file a tax return and have a child but did not register on the IRS Non-Filers tool by April 22, they will still receive their automatic $1,200 beginning next week. Given the deadline has passed, by law, the additional $500 per eligible child amount would be paid in association with filing a tax return for 2020. This group can no longer use the Non-Filers tool to add eligible children.

Note – Direct Express Account Holders: You may use the Non-Filers tool, but you cannot receive your and your children’s payment on your Direct Express account. You may only select a bank account for direct deposit or leave bank information blank and receive the money by mail.

No action needed by most taxpayers 

The Treasury Department will make these automatic payments to SSA, SSI, RRB and VA recipients. Recipients will generally receive the automatic $1,200 payments by direct deposit, Direct Express debit card or by paper check, just as they would normally receive their benefits.

For more information related to veterans and their beneficiaries who receive Compensation and Pension (C&P) benefit payments from VA, please visit VA.gov.

General IRS information about the Economic Impact Payments is available on a special section of IRS.gov.

Watch out for scams related to Economic Impact Payments 

The IRS urges taxpayers to be on the lookout for scams related to the Economic Impact Payments. There is no fee required to receive these payments.

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Filomena Mealy

Filomena is a Relationship Manager for the Tax Outreach, Partnership and Education Branch of the Internal Revenue Service's.  Her responsibilities include developing outreach partnerships with non-tax companies, organizations and associations, such as the banking industry to educate and communicate changes in tax law, policy and procedures. She has provided content and served as a contributor to various associations and online media sources.
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