The second wave of coronavirus stimulus payments will start hitting bank accounts in the next week, but retirees, veterans and pensioners expecting paper checks may have to wait up to 20 weeks for the cash.
More than 80 million people have already received direct deposits worth up to $1,200 as part of the government’s $2.2 trillion stimulus package designed to blunt the impact of the pandemic ravaging the U.S. economy.
The first wave of checks were sent to people who had already provided the Internal Revenue Service with direct deposit information in their 2018 or 2019 tax returns.
The next round of funding will now go out on a weekly basis to people who recently provided their information to the IRS and have not been paid already, according to a new timeline from the House Ways and Means Committee.
But the 100 million Americans who haven’t recently filed returns — including pensioners, retirees and veterans — could wait up to five months to see a paper check, the IRS estimates.
According to the committee memo, the IRS began sending physical checks this week to people who only have an address on file.
These will be issued at a rate of 5 million a week, starting with those on the lowest incomes, and could take “up to 20 weeks” to complete, the memo says, meaning some taxpayers won’t receive the money until September.
The IRS recently established an online portal where people who didn’t file tax returns in the two years can submit bank account information to get their stimulus money faster.
People who have provided their payment information to the IRS using that portal can expect to receive their stimulus check the following week, according to the committee memo.
The IRS website crashed last week when millions of taxpayers tried to use the new ‘Get My Payment’ tool to check when they would be paid.
Meanwhile, reports have also emerged of stimulus money going to taxpayers who have died while millions of needy Americans wait for the payment.
One disabled veteran told the Washington Post he thought it was unfair that he and other low-income Americans would be among the last to receive the lifeline.
The IRS did not immediately respond to request for comment.