Michael on June 30th, 2008
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Last week, Nickel of 5centnickel wrote of Some Stimulus Payments Diverted to Pay Outstanding Debts.

This got me to thinking about my own personal experience with the stimulus, which I posted on that blog and have provided below:

Whatever you do, just don’t count on knowing when or how you’ll get your money. Since the stimulus was announced, I (and presumably millions of others) have been told:

  1. Although I owed money with my 1040, I’ll receive my stimulus payment in early May via direct deposit, so long as I indicate my direct deposit info on my 1040. (I have a very “low” last two digits of my SSN.)
  2. Early May comes and goes and I get a letter (this one from my Congresswoman; the first was from the IRS) telling me how wonderful it is that I am getting a stimulus. How much did this mailing cost? More or less than the first? How about the check and less self-congratulations about sending me my own money back.
  3. I get another letter last Friday saying that–no matter that I had indicated my direct deposit info on my 1040–since I owed taxes on my 1040, I would be receiving my stimulus via check in about 6 weeks. Thank you for this additional unsolicited letter at a cost to the government, ahem, me, of how much?
  4. My entire stimulus payment is direct deposited into my account earlier this week.

I’m thrilled I never called to ask the IRS what was going on (although it was nearly two months late according to the schedule they voluntarily published.)

Does anybody really believe someone would have told me the answer and be doing anything other than guessing? And my situation is about as straightforward as they come. No liens, no moves, no new accounts, on-time tax filing.

# # #

What’s been your experience with the stimulus payment so far? Get it? Still waiting? How does it compare to what you were told to expect? Did your Congressperson rent a hot air balloon to tout his/her “accomplishment?”

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8 Comments to “Stimulus payments – a braggy uncoordinated mess?”

  1. Amanda says:

    My story is not very dramatic luckily! We didn’t receive anything from the government about the rebate check..until we went away last month for two weeks. Of course, during this time the letter informing us that the check was arriving came, followed by the check a few days later. Which was funny to us because we, upon our return, opened them within minutes of each other. So painless. My sister in CA has not received hers and neither have my parents in NH..however, my other sister who is working abroad has received hers. We guessed that it has partially to do with when you file as I filed in early March and the rest of the “fam” filed early April. No MA congressperson has laid claim to being behind the check but I gotta wonder how much paper and postage is being wasted with all these letters!

  2. Lisa says:

    Definitely received several announcements that the check would be coming, on bright, shiny paper with official-looking seals. Then I watched as my friends’ checks came in one by one, and I received still more announcements. The actual check finally arrived last week. I almost ripped it up assuming it was yet another announcement. Which goes to show that one should never make assumptions with the IRS

  3. Monica says:

    We got our stimulus check at the beginning of June. I was actually impressed that they got it out so fast. However, because our oldest son was not born in this country, and therefore had an [assigned] tax id # instead, he was not included on the stimulus check. This, I thought, was a con as we still have to pay anything to do with him, we have to claim him as a dependent, why on earth would he not be counted as a child for whom we should get a stimulus payment?? My accountant, who really should have been on the ball about this and told me to go out and get my son a SSN so that we could get that payment, reckons we’ll get that money next year. And I think I just saw a pig flying by my window.

  4. Christine Pierson says:

    I never received the stimulus payment. Although I did receive several announcements such as; was on the way through direct deposit, then another saying a check would be mailed, then another saying the payment had been applied to taxes I owed. Never put all of your eggs in one basket!

  5. Michael says:

    Wow, that’s a lot of ugliness. This is one of those areas where, if you think you’re entitled to it, make sure to follow-up. Six-hundred bucks (or possibly a heck of a lot more) is too much to allow to disappear due to disorganization (or worse) on the part of the government.

  6. Sherry Kelley says:

    We still haven’t gotten our 1200, they sure cashed our check, which we borrowed to pay them almost 2000 in March! We were told the check was cashed, but they just were too busy to process our return, so…as they chuckled, who knows, we’ll get it. Okay, We waited, called again, they can’t find our return now. But, they do know we paid, oh well, send a copy, mention both people you talked to and their “code #’s” and include copy of canceled check, we’ll process it, can’t say when tho. Well, that was the last week in July. Now, a month later, still nothing!! I have oh so little faith, my congresswoman won’t write back to me when I asked her what the heck this mess is all about!

  7. Marty says:

    Well here it is October 31st and my son still has not received his stimulus check. I’m so confused about it because when I read up on the information on how to receive one it says although we claimed him He is 20 so we really didn’t get the child tax credit he should still be eligible for one? But we can not find out anything on his check? I just wish I could find out because he is always asking why he never received one and I just don’t know what to tell him? If anyone out there can help me please do so !! THANK YOU !!!

  8. Michael says:

    Marty- how frustrating! If you claimed his as a dependent, he’s not going to get a stimulus payment. From the IRS web site, he is eligible if “You are not a dependent or eligible to be a dependent on someone else’s federal tax return. (The same must be true of any family members claimed on your return.)”

    Furthermore, it appears that someone who is 20 years old is too old for him to have increased your stimulus payment by $300, which he would have done had he been, say 15.

    You can always find out more at the IRS web site’s economic stimulus section.

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