The Puerto Rico Treasury Department will open a website at 4 p.m. today so that taxpayers who filed their 2019 returns without their bank account information can submit it to be next in line to receive their $1,200 federal stimulus checks.
Treasury Secretary Francisco Parés said only those individuals should access the website today through next Tuesday. The agency will begin cutting those checks on May 13, he said.
It is estimated that about 250,000 taxpayers will have to enter their bank information in this second stage of the first phase of the Distribution Plan. The disbursement of federal aid included in the CARES Act began on May 1, and so far, 338,000 families have received direct deposit into their bank accounts, he said.
“In keeping with the recommendations of our Information Technology Area and external consultants, Treasury is taking the pertinent measures to launch this phase, which will cause high demand, given the situation that Puerto Rico is going through due to COVID -19,” Parés said.
“Said measures respond to the best public interest to ensure that the implementation of this incentive program is executed with fluidity and effectiveness,” Parés said, noting the website will be operating 24 hours a day.
“We urge all individuals who qualify in this second stage of implementation of the first phase of the Plan, to observe the following recommendations,” Parés said.
Individuals whose Social Security numbers end in 0, 1, 2, or 3 should begin entering their information starting at 4 p.m. today. People whose Social Security number ends in 4, 5 and 6 should submit their info on May 9 starting at 4 p.m. Finally, individuals whose Social Security number ends in 7, 8, or 9 should input their data on May 10 starting at 4 p.m.
As an alternative, taxpayers who filed the 2019 return and who are users of Treasury’s online SURI system are also encouraged to use the option provided in the Alerts area, where they will be able to enter their bank account number in the appropriate box.
Individuals will be able to submit their banking information through December 2020, and those eligible to receive their stimulus checks under the CARES Act will get a deposit.
“As we have explained, we’re disbursing aid in three phases and this stage is the last of the first part that specifically includes the taxpayers who filed the 2019 return,” Parés said.
In a second phase that will begin soon, Treasury will inform taxpayers who filed the 2018 return when to submit their bank information through the same website.
The third phase of the project will include all citizens who are not required to file a tax return and who are not claimed as a dependent, such as retirees, Social Security and Nutritional Assistance Program (PAN, in Spanish) beneficiaries, veterans and college students, among others, Parés said.