EIP FAQs and Scam Tips

Posted: Apr 24, 2020

Tips to Avoid Scams Related to Economic Impact Payments

  1. The IRS will not call or email you asking for personal information.  If someone sends you an email or calls your home or cell phone asking for your Social Security number, bank account information or other personal information in order for you to receive your Economic Impact Payment check, do not engage, as it likely coming from a scammer.
  2.  Beware of websites or social media attempts to request money or personal information.  The official IRS website is www.IRS.gov.
  3.  Do not open surprise emails, click on links, or click on attachments that appear to be coming from the IRS.
  4. You can forward suspicious emails to phishing@IRS.gov, then delete the email.  
  5. The IRS will not send you an overpayment, then make you send it back in cash, gift cards or via money transfer.

Check Economic Impact Payments (EIPs) FAQs

  1. Is the Economic Impact Payment taxable as 2020 income? 

No, it is not income, and you will not owe tax on your payment.  It will not reduce your refund or increase the amount you owe when you file your 2020 tax return next year. https://www.irs.gov/coronavirus/economic-impact-payment-information-center 


  1. When are the first paper checks going out?  

They are expected to be issued in late April or the first week of May.  They are expected to go first to families with the lowest income, possibly those who make less than $10,000 per year, but do not have direct deposit information on file with the IRS.  Other groups of checks will be sent out weekly, based on income.


  1. How can I track my payment?  

The IRS has a payment tool, “Check My Payment,” that enables recipients to check the status of their Economic Impact Payments, including the date these payments are scheduled to be mailed to them.  The information is updated once per day overnight, so there is no need to check the site more than once a day.  See https://www.irs.gov/coronavirus/get-my-payment.   


  1. What does it mean if I go to the website and receive a message, “Status Not Available?”

You could be receiving this message for any of the following reasons: 

1) You are required to file a tax return, but:

a.) the IRS hasn’t completed processing your 2019 return; 

b.) the application doesn’t yet have your data.

2) You don’t usually file a tax return, and:

a.) You used the Non-filers link https://www.irs.gov/coronavirus/non-filers-enter-payment-info-here, but the IRS hasn’t processed your Entry yet;

b.) You receive an SSA or RRBA form 1099, or SSI or VA benefits, but information hasn’t been loaded into the IRS systems yet for people who don’t normally file a tax return.


3) You are not eligible for an Economic Impact Payment. 


  1. Once I receive a check for my Economic Impact Payment, how can I verify that it is authentic?

Click on the following link for the Treasury Check Information System (TCIS).  It is available from Monday, 6:00 a.m. thru Saturday, 12:01 a.m. Eastern Time.
Treasury Check Verification Application


  1. What security features are available on US Treasury Checks?

Each check bears the US Treasury seal, they are printed on watermark paper, each has ultraviolet overprinting invisible to the naked eye, the US Treasury seal, located to the right of the image of the Statue of Liberty, contains security ink in black that will run red when moisture is applied, and each check contains micro-printed words so small that they appear as just a line to the naked eye.  For a detailed picture of a US Treasury Check with these security features, visit this link:  https://fiscal.treasury.gov/files/reference-guidance/gold-book/check-security-features.pdf