Your Second Chance to Claim Your Economic Stimulus Payment

In 2008, Congress authorized the IRS to issue Economic Stimulus Payments (ESP) to boost the economy and help struggling families.  By September 2008, 114.8 million individuals received about $300 from the IRS. However, if you didnít file a 2007 tax return you may have missed out. Fortunately, you will get a second chance.

Now, referred to as the Recovery Rebate Credit, the payment can be claimed in 2009 by filing a 2008 tax return. Individuals may claim the Recovery Rebate Credit if they fall under one of these categories:

  • Qualified in 2008 but didnít file a 2007 tax return by the October 15th 2008 deadline; or
  • Received an ESP in 2008 based on their 2007 circumstances, but due to changed circumstances in 2008 now would be entitled to a larger amount. or
  • Did not qualify for the ESP in 2008, but they now meet the requirements based on their 2008 income; or
  • Filed a 2007 tax return but did not receive an ESP or a clear explanation of why they didnít.
To qualify for ESP, individuals must have had $3,000 or more in income from earnings; Social Security benefits, Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI), Veterans disability benefits; or a combination of any of these benefits and pay in 2007. You must have a valid Social Security number. Individuals cannot get ESP if they can be claimed as a dependent by another person.
For more information about filing your 2007 tax return click here.
Information provided by the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities.