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Americans rushed to check their bank accounts Tuesday night after the Internal Revenue Service announced the start of a second round of Economic Impact Payments. Direct deposits have begun and mailing of paper checks started Wednesday, Dec. 30.

Authorized by the newly enacted COVID-relief legislation, the second round of payments is generally $600 for singles and $1,200 for married couples filing a joint return.

In addition, those with children will also receive $600 for each qualifying child. Dependents who are 17 and older are not eligible for the child payment.

The IRS emphasizes that there is no action required by eligible individuals to receive this second payment.

Some Americans may see the direct deposit payments as pending or as provisional payments in their accounts before the official payment date of Jan. 4, 2021.

The IRS reminds taxpayers that the payments are automatic, and they should not contact their financial institutions or the IRS with payment timing questions.

As with the first round of payments under the CARES Act, most recipients will receive these payments by direct deposit. For Social Security and other beneficiaries who received the first round of payments via Direct Express, they will receive this second payment the same way.

Anyone who received the first round of payments earlier this year but doesn’t receive a payment via direct deposit will generally receive a check or, in some instances, a debit card.

For those in this category, the payments will conclude in January.

Eligible individuals who did not receive an Economic Impact Payment this year – either the first or the second payment – will be able to claim it when they file their 2020 taxes in 2021.

If additional legislation is enacted to provide for an additional amount, the Economic Impact Payments that have been issued will be topped up as quickly as possible.

“Throughout this challenging year, the IRS has worked around the clock to provide Economic Impact Payments and critical taxpayer services to the American people,” said Chuck Rettig, IRS Commissioner.

“We are working swiftly to distribute this second round of payments as quickly as possible. This work continues throughout the holidays and into the new year as we prepare for the upcoming filing season. We urge everyone to visit IRS.gov in the coming days for the latest information on these payments and for important information and assistance with filing their 2021 taxes.”

To check the status of your payment, log on to IRS.gov/GetMyPayment. For other COVID-19-related tax relief, visit IRS.gov/Coronavirus.

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