IRS sends out 4 million refunds for 2020 unemployment benefit overpayments

July 14, 2021, 4:18 PM UTC

Millions of people who overpaid taxes on their 2020 unemployment benefits will start getting that money back beginning Wednesday.

The Internal Revenue Service says it has issued another round of refunds to 4 million taxpayers. The average check will come in at $1,265.

The refunds are a result of the American Rescue Plan Act, the March stimulus bill that also resulted in $1,400 payments to individuals. The bill excluded $10,200 in unemployment insurance from taxable income for certain individuals, but many affected people had already filed their taxes.

Electronic payments will be made on July 14, with paper checks going out two days later, the IRS says. This is the third round of these refund payments, with previous ones having gone out in May and June. The IRS says they will continue through the summer.

People who paid taxes on unemployment last year are not required to file an amended return (unless the change makes them eligible for deductions or credits they didn’t initially claim). The IRS is reviewing tax forms filed before the Rescue Plan’s passage to identify people who are eligible for an adjustment. The agency is urging taxpayers not to call or contact its offices, as that will only slow the process down.

Taxpayers should receive letters from the IRS within 30 days of the adjustment, informing them whether they’ll receive a refund or if the money will be used for payment of debts to the IRS or other authorized agencies, as well as the amount of the adjustment.

This round of refunds comes as the IRS prepares to begin making Child Tax Credit payments on Thursday. (See if you’re eligible for those payments here.) And it follows the ongoing rollout of $1,400 stimulus checks to people who still haven’t received them. (If you’re still waiting on a check, the best way to track this third stimulus payment is via the “Get My Payment” portal on the website.)

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