FBI warns about coronavirus check scam

Posted at 7:10 AM, Mar 31, 2020
and last updated 2020-03-31 07:24:19-04

(LEX 18) — We don’t even have the money yet, but scammers are already eyeing your stimulus check. The FBI is warning people about what to look out for.

Eligible taxpayers will receive an economic impact payment of $1,200 and couples who file their taxes jointly will get $2,400.

The FBI and several state attorney generals warn that scammers may reach out via phone calls, texts, emails or through websites with promises to speed up the process or that they’ll obtain a payment or loan for you. Officials say you do not need to pay a fee to receive your stimulus check.

"We want people to be aware that that is not how the government operates and you will not receive unsolicited email from the government for your economic stimulus check,” said FBI Supervisory Special Agent Todd Hemmen.

There are some things you should know about the process. The IRS is using information provided in 2018 and 2019 tax returns to know where to send the payments.

People who file tax returns electronically and provide the IRS with their bank information will likely get their payments earlier through direct deposit. Paper checks are expected to take longer to mail out. Officials says you'll receive a notice by mail no later than 15 days after the payment was sent out, detailing the amount, how it was sent and an IRS phone number to call if the money does not arrive.

The IRS announced Monday that it will start sending out checks in the next three weeks.

You can follow updates about the stimulus checks at