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IRS unemployment tax refund August update: You might get a check next week if you’ve been waiting

Fast Company logo Fast Company 8/13/2021 Christopher Zara

More tax refunds are on the way for people who overpaid taxes on 2020 unemployment compensation, and now we’re getting fresh signs that the next round of payments could be coming as soon as next week.

A number of excited social media users took to Twitter, Reddit, and Facebook groups on Friday to say their online tax transcript had updated with a payment date of Wednesday, August 18. That would be consistent with historical payment patterns from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), which has typically begun sending out unemployment-related refunds on a Wednesday for people with direct deposit. (Previous rounds began hitting bank accounts on July 14 and July 28, both Wednesdays.)

As of Friday morning, the IRS has not officially announced when the next round of payments, expected in August, would be delivered. A source familiar with the timing confirmed that a batch of payments was scheduled to go out the week of August 16 but did not have an exact date. Reached for comment by Fast Company, a spokesperson for the agency had no immediate information. We’ll update this post when we hear more.

In the meantime, if you’ve been waiting patiently for one of these payments, it’s worth checking your tax transcript, which will usually update when a new payment to you has been authorized.

Announced in March, the refunds are being delivered all summer to some taxpayers who reported unemployment compensation on their 2020 tax returns. The American Rescue Plan, signed into law on March 11, excluded up to $10,200 in taxable income from unemployment compensation, and the IRS later said it identified some 13 million taxpayers whose returns may have to be adjusted as a result of the changes. Not all of the adjustments will result in refunds.

So far, the IRS has sent about 8.7 million unemployment-related refunds, beginning in late May. As of late last month, the average payment size reported by the IRS was $1,686. It has said the payments will continue throughout the summer. Fingers crossed!


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