EDITOR NOTE: Talk about injustice, the IRS reigns supreme when dishing out punishment for even the smallest of accounting infractions yet it’s hardly held accountable when it sends $13 million in stimulus payments to the wrong bank accounts. Talk about one-sided. Have you not received your second stimulus payment. Did you even receive the first? How do you know it didn’t go to another person, living or dead (yes, some of the deceased received stimulus checks)? Sure, bureaucracy has its problems. But for agencies known to be extra meticulous, like the IRS, such mistakes defy belief. Yet for many Americans who haven’t received their stimulus checks, that’s the reality they’re facing. It’s their loss. The IRS, as an agency, has the privilege to screw up with impunity, so it seems.
For millions of Americans who used online tax services, their second stimulus payment may have been sent to the wrong bank account.
Tax preparation company Jackson Hewitt said the Internal Revenue Service sent payments to an estimated 13+ million banks accounts that are no longer open or valid.
These bank accounts were set up by tax companies, like Jackson Hewitt, H&R Block, and TurboTax, as temporary accounts used to deposit tax refunds for their customers who opt to have tax preparation fees taken out of their refund.
The accounts are usually closed after the remaining refund money to pass along to the client.
The problem is, the IRS still has these accounts in its records, so that’s where the federal government sent millions of stimulus payments.
Tax firms said they are doing everything they can but point out this is the IRS’ mistake.
A TurboTax spokesperson told the CBS 11 I-Team on Friday, Jan. 8, “Stimulus payments for millions of TurboTax customers affected by the IRS error will be deposited starting today, January 8th. We have been working tirelessly with the Treasury and IRS to get stimulus payments to our customers. We know how important these funds are for so many Americans and we regret that an IRS error caused a delay.”
H&R Block said it “processed all stimulus payments to millions of our customers, whether via direct deposit to a bank account, check, or onto our Emerald Prepaid Mastercard.”
However, for many Americans who used online tax services, it may be too late to receive an advance $600 stimulus payment.
Jackson Hewitt released the following statement on the matter on Friday:
Unfortunately, because of an IRS error impacting the entire tax industry, millions of payments were sent to bank accounts that were no longer open or valid. Impacted banks were required to send the affected payments back to the U.S. Treasury. This means that some people, including some Jackson Hewitt clients, may not have received their expected stimulus payment. This is unacceptable and Jackson Hewitt is demanding that the IRS immediately send our customers’ stimulus funds back to our bank partner so the payments can get reissued to clients as quickly as possible.
People who do not receive their stimulus payment by the January 15 deadline will have to wait to claim their stimulus check as a tax credit when they file their 2020 taxes.
To find out if you’ve been impacted by this IRS error, click on the IRS’ Get My Payment tool to view the status of your stimulus check.
The status will show the last four digits of the bank account number the payment was sent to.
Originally posted on CBS Local