BUFFALO, N.Y. (WKBW) — The IRS began sending out stimulus checks to millions of Americans this week, and there's a new tool to help you get yours faster and safer.
The IRS website has a new 'Get My Payment' option, that is open for you to use. It allows you to enter direct deposit information, and check the status of your stimulus check.
If you received a paper check for your tax returns you can use the online form to enter your bank account information to get your stimulus money via direct deposit. Direct deposit payments will come before physical checks come in the mail, according to the Treasury Department.
If you filed your 2018 or 2019 taxes with the direct deposit option you don't have to do anything. You will automatically receive the stimulus you qualify for.
If you were not required to file your 2018 or 2019 tax returns, you can go to the IRS website right now, and click the 'Non-Filers Enter Your Payment Info Here' option. The IRS won't know to send you a stimulus check otherwise.
Noelle Carter, the President & CEO of Consumer Credit Counseling Service of Buffalo, said recommends the direct deposit option.
"If you didn't have your banking account information already available, provide it so you can get your funds as soon as possible," she said.
The direct deposit option also prevents the check from being stolen in the mail. Carter said if you check the staus of your check and it says it was sent, monitor your mail to make sure you receive it, and report it to the IRS if you don't.
The IRS is asking that all work regarding stimulus checks be done on its website, not over the phone.
Carter also advised to keep an eye out for scammers.
"Saying that you need to possibly send some kind of money to them in order to receive your stimulus payment, or to click this link to find more information," she said.
The IRS won't call, text, or email you. Carter said all communication will be done via paper mail.
You can find a breakdown of what funds you will receive here.
Here you can find some tips on what to do with the funds when you receive them.