The IRS just sent out another batch of $1,400 stimulus checks to Americans, but not everyone will be able to keep them. The new checks, sent last week, include people who recently filed 2020 tax returns which the IRS has processed.

So far, about 160 million payments have been sent out with this stimulus. That includes $1,400 checks for single tax payers earning less than $75,000 on their latest tax filing and couples who earned under $150,000 combined.

What happens, however, if you received a $1,400 stimulus check for a spouse who has passed away?

“Individuals who were deceased before January 1, 2021, if they received a payment, that money will have to be returned to the IRS,” Luis D. Garcia with the IRS told MLive.

However, according to the IRS, if you filed a joint return or your spouse died sometime in 2021, you can keep the money.

“If you filed a joint return for last year, a 2020 return, you’re eligible for the $1,400. It’s when the return was filed, not what year it was filed. If the spouse died after the filing, you can keep it,” added Garcia.

RELATED: Who else may have to return their $1,400 stimulus check to the IRS

A spouse who received a check in both names can keep the money, but must return it to the IRS and include a letter requesting a new stimulus payment be reissued in the surviving spouse’s name only. Make sure to include your social security numbers in the letter to the IRS.


If the payment was a paper check and hasn’t been cashed:

  • Write “Void” in the endorsement section on the back of the check
  • Mail the voided Treasury check to the appropriate IRS location for your state (see below)
  • Include a note with the reason for the return

If the payment was direct deposit or a paper check and you cashed it:

  • Submit a personal check, money order, etc., to the appropriate IRS location for your state
  • Write on the check/money order made payable to “U.S. Treasury” and write “2020EIP,” and the taxpayer identification number (Social Security number, or individual taxpayer identification number) of the recipient of the check
  • Include a brief explanation of the reason for returning the EIP


Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Vermont: Andover Refund Inquiry Unit, 310 Lowell St, Mail Stop 666A, Andover, MA 01810

Georgia, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Virginia: Atlanta Refund Inquiry Unit, 4800 Buford Hwy, Mail Stop 112, Chamblee, GA 30341

Florida, Louisiana, Mississippi, Oklahoma, Texas: Austin Refund Inquiry Unit, 3651 S Interregional Hwy 35, Mail Stop 6542, Austin, TX 78741

New York: Brookhaven Refund Inquiry Unit, 5000 Corporate Ct., Mail Stop 547, Holtsville, NY 11742

Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Nevada, New Mexico, Oregon, Utah, Washington, Wisconsin, Wyoming: Fresno Refund Inquiry Unit, 5045 E Butler Avenue, Mail Stop B2007, Fresno, CA 93888

Arkansas, Connecticut, Delaware, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, New Jersey, Ohio, West Virginia: Kansas City Refund Inquiry Unit, 333 W Pershing Rd, Mail Stop 6800, N-2, Kansas City, MO 64108

Alabama, North Carolina, North Dakota, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee: Memphis Refund Inquiry Unit, 5333 Getwell Rd Mail Stop 8422, Memphis, TN 38118

District of Columbia, Idaho, Illinois, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island: Philadelphia Refund Inquiry Unit, 2970 Market St, DP 3-L08-151, Philadelphia, PA 19104

A foreign country, U.S. possession or territory, or use an APO or FPO address, or file Form 2555 or 4563, or are a dual-status alien: Austin Refund Inquiry Unit, 3651 S Interregional Hwy 35, Mail Stop 6542 AUSC, Austin, TX 78741


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