IRS IT Improvement Speeds Rebate Checks
In a bit of good news, Government Computer News reports that a new Internal Revenue Service (IRS) computer program upgrade allowed the taxpayer rebate checks to be sent out a week earlier than expected. The initial schedule called for the checks to be sent this Friday, 2 May, but now they are going out today.
Some 130 million taxpayers are expected to receive a total of $110 billion starting now and running into July. The checks, which will be (depending on income) $600 per taxpayer, $1200 per couple and $300 per child, will be sent out according to the last two numbers of a person's Social Security number.
The IRS is also warning of likely scams in regard to the rebates as well. As noted on the IRS website:
"Some people have received phone calls about the economic stimulus payments, in which the caller impersonates an IRS employee. The caller asks the taxpayer for their Social Security and bank account numbers, claiming that the IRS needs the information to complete the processing of the taxayer's payment. In reality, the IRS uses the information contained on the taxpayer's tax return to process stimulus payments, rather than contacting taxpayers by phone or e-mail."
"An e-mail claiming to come from the IRS about the '2008 Economic Stimulus Refund' tells recipients to click on a link to fill out a form, apparently for direct deposit of the payment into their bank account. This appears to be an identity theft scheme to obtain recipients' personal and financial information so the scammers can clean out their victims' financial accounts. In reality, taxpayers do not have to fill out a separate form to get a stimulus payment or have it directly deposited; all they had to do was file a tax return and provide direct deposit information on the return."
So, spend wisely and avoid the scammers.
And kudos to the IRS.