The last minute is now here

Published 8:56 pm Thursday, October 2, 2008

If you are one of the 752 people in Chilton County who didn’t receive an economic stimulus payment because you haven’t filed a 2007 income tax return, time is running out.

Oct. 15 is the deadline for anyone to file a return to receive one of the stimulus checks. That day is also the last day to file tax returns for the 120,000 Alabama residents who received an extension.

Statewide, the IRS has identified 86,155 recipients of Social Security and Veterans Affairs benefits who appear to qualify for a stimulus payment but still have not filed for one. They must file a tax return by Oct. 15 to get a payment this year.

The IRS E-file and Free File programs are still available to file returns for 2007 but only through Oct. 15.

Taxpayers may visit or call the IRS toll-free at 1-800-829-1040 to get instructions about how to file for a payment or to find the location of the nearest IRS office or stimulus payment help site. The IRS has partnered with numerous organizations that are conducting outreach efforts to older Americans and veterans.

People must file a tax return in order to receive an economic stimulus payment even if they normally are not required to file a return.

For people who have no tax liability and who have no requirement to file a tax return because their income is too low or nontaxable, there is a stimulus payment of up to $300 ($600 for married couples) plus the $300 payment for each qualifying child. However, people in this situation must have at least $3,000 in qualifying income from earned income, nontaxable combat pay as well as certain benefits from Social Security, Veterans Affairs and Railroad Retirement.

These checks have been beneficial for anyone who has received them. Although it isn’t a whole lot of money, it is still enough to provide a cushion for many residents. Don’t let this opportunity slide.