1. Know where to get help
If at any point you need help, there are live people who can answer questions and walk you through the process.
Code for America has created a fully online process to help you file the IRS form. Visit Get Your Refund to connect with an IRS-certified volunteer. You’ll fill out a short form first, then wait for a volunteer to contact you.
If you want to fill out the form yourself but want someone to walk you through the process, call the United Way’s 211 Economic Impact Payment Helpline: 1-844-322-3639. It operates 24/7 with live agents available 10 am – 6 pm ET M-F through October 15, 2020.
2. Make sure the online form is the right option
First, make sure you are eligible for the payment. You are eligible for the full $1,200 payment if:
- Your income is under $75,000 (single, or married filing separately) or $150,000 (married filing jointly). You also qualify if you have no income.
- You and your spouse, if filing jointly, each have a valid SSN (one if military).
- Someone else cannot claim you as a dependent on their tax return.
- You are a U.S. citizen, permanent resident, or qualifying resident alien.
Some people will need to file taxes to get the payment. However, you may be able to complete the online form instead of filing. Complete the online form for to get your stimulus check if you:
- Earned less than $12,200 ($24,400 if married) in 2019 AND
- Are not required to file a tax return AND
- Don’t plan on filing taxes
You’ll need to complete the form by October 15, 2020 so the IRS can send your payment this year.
3. Fill out the form – by yourself or with support
If you decide to fill out the form by yourself, you can follow these detailed instructions. It is easier to fill out the form on a computer than a phone or tablet.
For support with filing, you can use Code for America’s free service or call 1-844-322-3639 for a live agent.
Regardless of how you fill out the form, you will want to be prepared with some information. You’ll need:
- Full legal name
- Your Social Security Number
- Date of Birth
- Mailing address: If you don’t have a permanent address, shelters or service providers may allow you to use their address for tax purposes. If you are not staying in a shelter or cannot find a service provider nearby, you can also use a trusted relative’s or friend’s address. The IRS will deliver checks to P.O. boxes.
- Email address: If you don’t remember/have the password to your email, you can create a new email address for free through a provider like Gmail, Yahoo! Mail, or AOL.
- Bank Account direct deposit/routing number (optional): Direct deposit is the quickest and safest way to get your payment. If you don’t have a bank account, you can still get your payment through direct deposit using a prepaid debit card, payment apps like CashApp, Venmo, or PayPal, or opening an online bank account. If you cannot use these options, you’ll get your payment as a paper check.
4. Check for confirmation after
If you filed the form on your own, you’ll receive an email from Customer Service at Free File Fillable Forms that either says you successfully submitted your information, or that there is a problem and how to correct it.
Use the IRS Get My Payment tool to check when you will get your payment.