Save and Invest

'This is such chaos': Americans report continuous problems with the IRS coronavirus stimulus check tracking tool

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) building in Washington, D.C.
Getty Images

When Laura Nadal attempted to use the IRS Get My Payment tool to track her stimulus check, she was met with a series of error messages. After multiple attempts over two days to track her payment, she's still unable to and doesn't understand why. The tool keeps telling her that the information she inputs does not match the information the IRS has on file.

"Not getting the check yet didn't bother me. It's this glitch telling me that the information is incorrect," Nadal, who lives in New Jersey, tells CNBC Make It. "This is such chaos." 

The IRS website says the Get My Payment tool, which was released yesterday to help Americans track the status of their coronavirus stimulus checks, "is operating smoothly and effectively," and that "more than 6.2 million taxpayers have successfully received their payment status." But that has not been true for Nadal and many other Americans who reached out to CNBC Make It to express their frustration.

Some say that it has incorrect bank account information they can't update, while others say they've been locked out of the system completely. Many keep receiving error messages. One user, who provided CNBC Make It with screenshots of his efforts, received a message that his payment was deposited on April 15. However, his bank told him it has not yet received the payment.

The IRS did not return a request for comment about the ongoing issues on Thursday. On Wednesday, a spokesperson told CNBC Make It that the tool was experiencing issues because so many people were trying to use it at one time and the system was overwhelmed.

California resident Nicole Wright has worked in IT, so she understands the issues to a certain extent, she tells CNBC Make It. Still, she's troubled that she can't input her information on the site.

"I can't take my dog to the vet right now, and that $1,200 would help," she says. "I don't know if I have a lot of faith at this point."

If you filed a tax return in 2018 or 2019, the IRS has your information despite the messages that may come up on the Get My Payment tool, an IRS spokesperson told CNBC Make It on Wednesday. 

Still, many people are worried that the tool's glitches could mean they won't receive their stimulus payment at all, including a 33-year-old youth soccer coach from Colorado who has tried repeatedly to track the status of his check and provided screenshots of his efforts to CNBC Make It. He has been unable to get his payment information, only receiving the notification that his payment status is not available.

"I am just trying to use any and every resource to find more information and determine my status," he says. "It is frustrating."

Consumers don't have many options for recourse, with the IRS working at a reduced capacity because of the pandemic. The site explicitly tells people "do not call" about issues with the stimulus check.

Don't miss:

Check out: The best credit cards of 2020 could earn you over $1,000 in 5 years

What is a pandemic?
What is a pandemic?