- Days left
Last week I vented my frustration at the IRS, the government, George Bush -- anyone! -- when I wrote, Where's my stimulus check. The post hit a nerve apparently, drawing thousands of page views and hundreds of comments.

I was supposed to receive my family's $1,800 economic stimulus check via direct deposit on May 9. But the day came and went with little fanfare...and even less money. That's the day I wrote the post.

Today, a full week later, Turbo Tax sends me an email. The salient section:

Dear Valued Customer,

We want to provide you with the most up–to–date information about the tax rebate to which you may be entitled.

Recently, you may have received a letter from the IRS advising you when to expect your Economic Stimulus Payment (rebate). That IRS letter may have inadvertently left off some important information. Taxpayers who chose to have their tax preparation fees deducted from their federal tax refund will receive their tax rebate in the mail, not via direct deposit.

I like the "inadvertently left off some important information" phrase. This is because that information was most definitely NOT on the IRS website before last week. I'd gone through the information on the site carefully several times earlier, in my duties as an editor for this blog (not to mention as a self-interested beneficiary of monies myself...). Indeed, because there was originally no such stipulation, I let myself get all excited for my May 9th windfall.

More frustrating, however, is that, judging from the many comments, there are plenty of people who did pay an electronic filing fee and did receive their payment as scheduled. Without further information from the IRS clarifying exactly what an electronic filing fee means to it, we're left to suspect that the payout is alarmingly random.

So. Now the "check is in the mail," but I've learned my lesson. I'll believe it when I see it. And until I see it, allegedly around June 20, I have to wonder what other clauses the IRS might slip in there. Families with brown-haired children won't get a check until 2009? Women under 5.4 will get cash, delivered by courier monkey, unless they have blue eyes, in which case they can find it under a rock in Farmer McGivern's field down the road....

Stay tuned! Have you gotten yours?

Increase your money and finance knowledge from home

Banking Services 101

Understand your bank's services, and how to get the most from them

View Course »

Getting out of debt

Everyone hates debt. Get out of it.

View Course »

TurboTax Articles

What is IRS Form 8824: Like-Kind Exchange

Ordinarily, when you sell something for more than what you paid to get it, you have a capital gain; when you sell it for less than what you paid, you have a capital loss. Both can affect your taxes. But if you immediately buy a similar property to replace the one you sold, the tax code calls that a "like-kind exchange," and it lets you delay some or all of the tax effects. The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) uses Form 8824 for like-kind exchanges.

What are ABLE Accounts? Tax Benefits Explained

Achieving a Better Life Experience (ABLE) accounts allow the families of disabled young people to set aside money for their care in a way that earns special tax benefits. ABLE accounts work much like the so-called 529 accounts that families can use to save money for education; in fact, an ABLE account is really a special kind of 529.

What is IRS Form 8829: Expenses for Business Use of Your Home

One of the many benefits of working at home is that you can deduct legitimate expenses from your taxes. The downside is that since home office tax deductions are so easily abused, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) tends to scrutinize them more closely than other parts of your tax return. However, if you are able to substantiate your home office deductions, you shouldn't be afraid to claim them. IRS Form 8829 helps you determine what you can and cannot claim.

What is IRS Form 8859: Carryforward of D.C. First-Time Homebuyer Credit

Form 8859 is a tax form that will never be used by the majority of taxpayers. However, if you live in the District of Columbia (D.C.), it could be the key to saving thousands of dollars on your taxes. While many first-time home purchasers in D.C. are entitled to a federal tax credit, Form 8859 calculates the amount of carry-forward credit you can use in future years, not the amount of your initial tax credit.

What is IRS Form 8379: Injured Spouse Allocation

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has the power to seize income tax refunds when a taxpayer owes certain debts, such as unpaid taxes or overdue child support. Sometimes, a married couple's joint tax refund will be seized because of a debt for which only one spouse is responsible. When that happens, the other spouse is said to be "injured" and can file Form 8379 to get at least some of the refund.

Add a Comment

*0 / 3000 Character Maximum