Stimulus Update: Not Sure Where You Stand? These Letters Will Tell You if You're Due More Stimulus Money

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  • The IRS has taken steps to provide the information American taxpayers need to file 2021 tax returns.
  • If you are due stimulus funds or Child Tax Credit payments, it is your responsibility to let the IRS know.

These letters from the IRS will help you file taxes and avoid processing delays.

Now is the time to determine whether you’ve received all the stimulus funds you're due. If not, you can claim the remaining amount when you fill out your 2021 tax return

Letter 6475

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has announced that it will begin sending IRS Letter 6475 this week. Letter 6475 is meant to serve as a reminder of what you've already received in stimulus payments and a nudge to remind you if you need to file for money that is rightfully yours.

While over 163 million stimulus checks were deposited into American bank accounts in 2021, some payments may have fallen through the cracks.

Here's what the IRS has to say about Letter 6475: "Recipients of the third round of the Economic Impact Payments will begin receiving information letters at the end of January. Using the information in these letters when preparing a tax return can reduce errors and delays in processing."

Letter 6475 is designed to help stimulus payment recipients make sure they're on the same page as the IRS (and make filing taxes easier). While there will be no taxes due on Economic Impact Payments, it is essential to include information regarding the payment when prompted on your tax form.

Letter 6419

Last month, the IRS also began sending out Letter 6419 to recipients of monthly advanced Child Tax Credit payments. Just as Letter 6475 breaks down how much was received in Economic Impact Payments, Letter 6419 breaks down the total amount of Child Tax Credit payments received. You'll need both letters (or the same information from the IRS website) to file your tax return.

If your family is eligible for Child Tax Credit payments but did not receive them in 2021, you can claim the full credit on your 2021 federal return. This applies whether or not you're typically obligated to file a tax return.

Be on the lookout for both letters and do not throw them away.

What to do if you don't receive a letter (or lose yours)

According to the IRS, you won't receive Letter 6475 if you never received a third stimulus check or a Letter 6419 if you did not claim monthly Child Tax Credit payments. If you missed a payment (or payments), don't worry. You can make the claim on your tax return. Any money due will be added to your tax refund or used to reduce your tax obligation.

If you lose Letter 6475, your online IRS account will give you all the stimulus information you need to get taxes done. If you haven't done so yet, you can create an account on the IRS website to get started.

While the correspondence may look like junk mail, keep your eyes out for anything from the IRS and keep it in a safe place with other important financial documents once it arrives. Given that the IRS is expecting processing delays this year due to a backlog of 2020 tax returns, an uptick in COVID cases, and staff shortages, what you don't want is to make a mistake on your tax return that extends the processing time. Having both letters with you as you prepare taxes can minimize the risk of mistakes.

If you're due money, it's up to you to claim it. Fortunately, the IRS is making it as easy as possible.

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