IRS Explains How Ineligible Taxpayers Should Return Stimulus Payments

PPP Safe Harbor Date Extended to May 14
May 6, 2020
PPP Good Faith Certifications for Loans Less Than $2 Million
May 13, 2020

IRS Explains How Ineligible Taxpayers Should Return Stimulus Payments

The IRS has posted information on how people who weren’t supposed to receive their economic impact payments for the coronavirus pandemic should return the money.


The CARES Act included provisions for sending economic impact payments of at least $1,200 to individuals, and $2,400 to married couples, plus $500 per dependent child.


The program, however, has been seen some issues since it was rolled out. The IRS had to rely on information from taxpayers’ 2018 and 2019 tax returns to send the money. In some cases, the IRS sent money to the families of deceased taxpayers or people who live abroad and don’t qualify for the payment. Undocumented and incarcerated taxpayers also aren’t considered to be eligible.


Frequently Asked Questions page has been setup on the IRS website about the economic impact payments, and information has been added about which taxpayers are ineligible and how to return the payments if money was received.


If the payment was a paper check, the IRS gave the following instructions:


  1. Write “Void” in the endorsement section on the back of the check.


  1. Mail the voided Treasury check immediately to the appropriate IRS location listed below.


  1. Don’t staple, bend, or paper clip the check.


  1. Include a note stating the reason for returning the check.


If the payment was a paper check and the taxpayer has cashed it, or if the payment was a direct deposit, the IRS recommended that taxpayers:


  1. Submit a personal check, money order, etc., immediately to the appropriate IRS location.


  1. Write on the check/money order made payable to “U.S. Treasury” and write 2020EIP, and the taxpayer identification number (Social Security number, or individual taxpayer identification number) of the recipient of the check.


  1. Include a brief explanation of the reason for returning the payment.


Further information on returning payments and ineligible recipients can be found on the IRS website here. 


The IRS has not issued clear penalties for those who do not return these payments. At this time, it appears the IRS is strongly recommending the return of payments, however, it is not suspected they will pursue individuals legally. This has not been confirmed.

We will continue to monitor this for additional updates and keep you informed on any changes. Please contact your Whalen advisor for further questions regarding this announcement.

Comments are closed.