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Common flu shot side effects that are totally normal – CNET

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The flu shot can cause some side effects which are usually normal.

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Face masks, hand washing, social distancing and avoiding gatherings are all essential for fighting and ending the COVID-19 pandemic. This year health authorities are asking everyone to get a flu shot to avoid a “twindemic” and the potential stress it could add to an already taxed health care system. 

According to the CDC, flu shots are safe and one of the best ways to prevent getting and spreading the flu to others. And for people that get vaccinated and get sick anyways, they often experience less severe symptoms

No matter how you look at it — flu vaccines can save lives. There are plenty of myths out there about the flu vaccine — one is that it can give you the flu. While that’s not true, you can experience some side effects from the flu shot. The side effects are usually mild and nothing to worry about, but it’s important to know about them so you’re not worried when you get your vaccine.

Below, Dr. Carmen Teague, specialty medical director at Atrium Health‘s Mecklenburg Medical Group shares what you need to know about common flu shot side effects that are normal, and which side effects may be a sign of something more serious. 

Common flu shot side effects 

The flu vaccine won’t give you the flu, but you can experience mild symptoms because of how the vaccine works. 

“The flu vaccine is designed to stimulate your immune system to build antibodies to the virus. That stimulation can cause a low-grade fever, a decrease in appetite, loose stool, mild fatigue or myalgia (muscle ache) and even a scant cough,” Dr. Teague says.

According to Dr. Teague, these symptoms usually resolve after a few days and are no cause for alarm. You may also experience some redness, swelling, or soreness where the shot was injected, which is also normal. 

The CDC says you can experience “flu-like” symptoms after getting the vaccine, such as:

  • Soreness, redness, and/or swelling at the injection site
  • Headache
  • Fever
  • Nausea
  • Muscle aches

The symptoms listed above should resolve in a few days. Also, keep in mind not everyone has symptoms, but those are the most common. When it comes to other symptoms, or symptoms that last longer, it’s important to keep in mind that you can still catch a cold, or other virus, right after you get the flu shot. 

So if you experience other symptoms that seem like the flu, it could be another illness and it does not mean the shot made you sick. The flu shot also takes about two weeks to become effective at protecting you from the flu, so you could technically catch the flu within that two-week window.

Signs of a more serious (but rare) reaction

“A very small percentage of people can have a true allergic reaction to the vaccine including chest tightness, difficulty breathing, wheezing, facial or throat swelling and redness of the eyes,” says Dr. Teague. If you experience these symptoms, you should seek medical attention immediately. Dr. Teague says severe allergic reactions usually happen within a few hours of getting the flu shot.

Signs of a severe allergic reaction, according to the CDC can include:

  • Difficulty breathing
  • Hoarseness or wheezing
  • Swelling around the eyes or lips
  • Hives
  • Paleness
  • Weakness
  • A fast heartbeat or dizziness

Another possible reaction is an infection where the shot was administered. “Patients can also develop an infection at the injection site which is manifested as worsening redness, swelling, warmth and tenderness,” Dr. Teague says. You should also seek immediate medical attention for this type of reaction. 

The information contained in this article is for educational and informational purposes only and is not intended as health or medical advice. Always consult a physician or other qualified health provider regarding any questions you may have about a medical condition or health objectives.

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Detachable Magnetic Tablet Cases – The ‘TIKTAALIK’ Tablet Case Offers 286 Hours of Battery Life (TrendHunter.com)

Detachable Magnetic Tablet Cases – The ‘TIKTAALIK’ Tablet Case Offers 286 Hours of Battery Life (TrendHunter.com)

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The best places to find prescription glasses online for 2020 – CNET

You could be missing out on hundreds of dollars in savings if you don’t look online for prescription eyeglasses, sunglasses and contact lenses. Buying prescription glasses online from a manufacturer such as Warby Parker or one of its many competitors in the eyeglasses industry is not only cheaper, it’s much easier than going somewhere in person for new glasses.

To help narrow down your options to find the best prescription glasses online, I’ve pulled together the nine best vendors I’ve found for buying prescription glasses. If I haven’t personally used a service on this list, someone on CNET’s staff has. We’ll update this list as we get the opportunity to try more. Before we dive in, note the following prerequisites, caveats and tips: 

  • You’ll need to know your prescription and pupillary distance from your optometrist before you use an online glasses retailer — so make sure you get a hard copy the next time you get your vision checked. Once you have that, most of these sites will let you upload a picture of the prescription from your phone the first time you buy something. 
  • Most of the sites highlighted here offer some sort of discount for first-time customers. That means the first time you buy glasses can be when you get the best deal, so it can pay to try several online retailers before buying glasses online.
  • See how to buy glasses online and save hundreds of dollars for more tips.
  • Some sites are experiencing shipping delays due to the coronavirus.

Read more: Use your phone to check your vision

Screenshot by David Carnoy/CNET

Several CNET editors have bought their glasses on Warby Parker, which has a good selection of sharp-looking eyeglass frames. While glasses start at only $95 with a single-vision prescription, chances are you’re going to pay a bit more — around $150 to $200, according to my colleagues — based on the type of frame options you choose, your prescription and type of eyeglass lenses. Sunglasses start at $175, and progressive lenses in both eyeglasses and sunglasses start at $295. But the finished products tend to be a step up from what more budget-oriented sites offer. 

Notable site features: The company’s app for iPhone X or later iPhone models — sorry, there’s no Android version yet — allows you to search the site by frame size and to try on various frames virtually (it works surprisingly well) and better yet, you can try up to five frames at home for five days for free. Once your five days are up, you place your box in the mail with the prepaid return label. Hopefully, you find at least one style that you like from among the five you picked for the home trial.

Warby also has physical optical stores in some locations around the country if you want to go in and try frames that way, and many have reopened after being closed due to the pandemic. Some of these locations also offer eye tests — and that prescription can be used at Warby or elsewhere.

The online glasses store also has a “buy a pair, give a pair” program, so for every pair of glasses you purchase, the company distributes a pair to someone in need, either for free or for “ultra-affordable prices.” (See details.)

Current deals and coupons: Nothing notable.

Shipping times: According to Warby: “Single vision glasses take seven to 10 business days to reach you from the time we have all of your order information. Sunglasses and progressives take 10 to 12 business days to reach you.” (These estimates jibe with the experience of CNET editors who have used the service.)

David Carnoy/CNET

Austin, Texas-based Roka has only recently branched out into the online prescription eyewear business. The retailer’s marketing slogan is “The most technically advanced eyewear that doesn’t look technical,” and its glasses are impressively light, durable and stylish looking. Like Warby Parker, these are at the higher-end of the online prescription eyeglasses spectrum, with prices of around $200 for a completed pair of prescription glasses, depending on some of the lens upgrades you might add. But Roka has some of the best glasses frames out there.

Roka started out making athletic glasses for runners, bikers and triathletes, and many of its prescription frames are bendable at the ends and have rubberized tracks that help you get a more secure fit. The frames also come with three sizes of grippy nose pads to ensure a better fit. They are among the most comfortable glasses I’ve worn — and they really stay on your face. I personally like the small Oslo frame in clear. 

Notable site features: Like Warby, there’s a home-trial program. You can try up to four frames at home for up to seven days. The box ships with a prepaid return label — you just drop it off at a post office to send it back.

Current deals and coupons: 10% off first order.

Shipping times: Roka doesn’t provide general estimates, and instead will give you a shipping time estimate when individual orders are placed based on which shipping option you choose (next-day, second-day or ground). 

Screenshot by David Carnoy/CNET

Founded 10 years ago in Israel, GlassesUSA.com offers more affordable options for buying prescription eyeglasses and designer eyeglasses online than sites like Warby Parker and Roka, with full prescription glasses starting at $38. But it also features premium designer frames from high quality eyeglasses brands, including Ray-Ban and Persol. The designer eyewear lists for more — frames start at $89 for basic completed Rx glasses — but discounts can bring them down in price. 

The one-stop shop for stylish glasses offers a 65% discount off your first frames, as well as discounts on lens upgrades (photochromic, for instance), contact lens options and reading glasses. It also recently launched a landing page for flash sales on nonprescription sunglasses. And around major holidays you can look for seasonal promotions on men’s eyeglasses, women’s glasses and contact lenses.

Notable site features: A virtual “mirror” feature lets you upload your photo to the site and see what a pair of eyeglasses looks like on your face shape to help you find the perfect pair of optical frames. And the company is upping the try-at-home ante. Instead of just sending you the frames, GlassesUSA will send you the frame with your actual prescription in it so you can truly try it out for up to 14 days — though the feature is limited to certain frames and lens options. The site also offers a 100% money-back guarantee so you can return your eye glasses if you don’t like what you ultimately get. And while we’ve spotted a few negative online reviews for GlassesUSA.com, the company seems to diligently follow up and respond to each one.

Current deals and coupons: Buy one, get one free with code BOGOFREE (discount applies to cheaper of two glasses). 70% off all lens upgrades with code LENSES70 (offer not eligible with bifocal or progressive lenses and “sale” items).

Shipping times: Expect seven to 10 days between ordering and arrival of GlassesUSA.com products, depending on the types of glasses and the shipping option you choose

Eyeglasses.com

Eyeglasses.com’s huge selection of both frames and lenses is a big selling point, but it also has the downside of offering so many options that it can be a little daunting to figure out exactly what to buy. You can get budget options — lens prices start at $39 — but the site skews toward more premium options. The idea is to get a significant discount (upwards of $200) on a high-quality frame-and-lens combo that you’d spend big bucks for in a brick-and-mortar shop. “Our business targets the main part of the eyewear industry, to supply the same products that customers would get at the eye doctor, but at 50% lower prices,” CEO and Founder Mark Agnew told me.

The site carries over 300 brands and 200,000 individual models, which seems to be the largest catalog of any online glasses site. The filters are also decent, allowing you to filter by rim style, material, brand, price, category, eye size, clips and country of origin. There are advanced search options too, such as bridge size and temple size, and B measurement. There’s no virtual try-on feature, however, and many of the frames don’t have models to show you what the frames look like on someone’s face. 

Notable site features: Eyeglasses.com says it only sells “high quality, individually made lenses made in the USA” and the sample glasses I tried had excellent lenses that gave me a very sharp image. As I said, there’s a huge selection of lens options, and you get a “Perfect Lenses Guarantee” that allows you to send your glasses back if they don’t work for you — you can get a redo or a full refund, your choice.

The site also offers a lens replacement option for your existing frames (you send your frames in). Unlike Lensabl (see below), which highlights the feature, Eyeglasses.com doesn’t market the option front and center.  

You can also get new glasses very quickly if you choose to pay extra for expedited shipping.

Current deals and coupons: 15% off for new customers in exchange for your email address.

Shipping times: Less than six days, according to the site. I received a new pair in a couple of days, but I had an expedited shipping option.

EyeBuyDirect

EyeBuyDirect is similar in many ways to a lot of its competitors. Along with an in-house frame brand (Rflkt Eyewear) it has some Ray-Ban and Oakley frames. I went with a more affordable Rflkt frame and paired it with a higher-end lens. The price came out to around $150 — you can go cheaper or more expensive. The frame quality was decent though not on par with, say, Roka’s frames. Lens quality was good and the ordering process was smooth, with a standard virtual try-on feature where you upload a photo of yourself to help you find the perfect frame. 

Notable site features: For an extra $29, you can get two-day delivery with single-vision lenses (many frames are available for two-day delivery). EyeBuyDirect says it’s the only site offering such fast delivery. It’s also worth noting that like Coastal (see below), with every pair of glasses you buy, you can opt to have EyeBuyDirect donate a pair to a person in need somewhere in the world — you pick where.

Current deals and coupons: As part of its autumn sale, discounts are available on many frames (up to 50% off). 

Screenshot by David Carnoy/CNET

Zenni has been around for awhile, and it’s the first site I used to buy cheap prescription glasses and sunglasses online. It’s more of a budget-minded site, and over the years, I got some nice deals on cheap glasses, particularly when Zenni was running its occasional three-for-two glasses sales. I’ve had both standard eyeglasses and prescription sunglasses made here and so has fellow editor David Katzmaier, who has since graduated to Warby Parker (he said, however, he would still buy prescription sunglasses at Zenni because they’re cheap and decent enough).

In the last couple of years, Zenni has been subtly shifting its image, bringing in celebrities like Rashida Jones and 49ers tight-end George Kittle to give the brand a little more of a hipper vibe. The lenses are good and these guys offer nice deals on upgrades to photochromic lenses.

Notable site features: There’s a Frame Fit “mirror” feature that allows you to upload a photo and see the frames on your face, as well as new “virtual” try-on feature (powered by Ditto) that allows you to see the glasses on your face as you move around using your computer’s webcam or your phone’s camera. This is similar to the virtual try-on feature that Warby Parker offers.

Current deals and coupons: Nothing notable.

Shipping times: “Your eyeglasses are delivered around two weeks from the time we receive your order,” says Zenni. In my experience, that sometimes stretches out closer to three weeks.

 

Screenshot by David Carnoy/CNET

What do you do if you’ve already got a pair of eyeglasses frames you like but your prescription is old (or the lenses on your frames are scratched) and you just want to replace the lenses? Lensabl is one of the few sites that allows you to send in your own pair of frames and get a new prescription lens for them. Its motto is, “Your frames, our lenses,” with prices starting at $77 for buying a basic pair of single-vision lenses. A pair of tinted sunglasses lenses start at $97. 

You upload your prescription online, pick the type of lens you want, and then Lensabl sends you a box with a prepaid return shipping label. You simply mail them your glasses in the box (shipping is free). First-time customers get 15% off. This site is also a good option if you have an old pair of glasses that you want to turn into prescription sunglasses.

Recently, Lensabl also started offering full glasses packages with its own frames that start at $77 for a single vision Rx and $177 for progressive.

Notable site features: For $40, you can renew your prescription online. Not everybody qualifies to take the online eye exam — you have to answer some questions to see if you qualify — but if you do, Lensabl says, “All you need is your computer, smartphone and about 15 minutes of time.” Your results will be reviewed by an eye doctor or optometrist licensed in your state who will then issue you a new prescription via email.

Current deals and coupons: 20% off sunglasses lenses with code SUN20. 15% off replacement lenses and Everyday Eyewear frames with code SEE15.

Shipping times: Lensabl pledges “about two weeks” turnaround time from when you ship your frames to when you’ll receive them back.  

Screenshot by David Carnoy/CNET

As you’d expect, SportRx caters to people looking for sports-oriented prescription glasses, with a wide variety of options from big eyewear brands such as Smith, Oakley, Ray-Ban, Costa and Nike. Not all the frames it sells have an Rx option, but most do.

Although you’ll get a better deal here than you’d get from your local sunglasses boutique, this is not a budget site and you can end up paying upwards of $250 or more, depending on your prescription. But SportRx runs some deals on frames and also gives you access to a real optician to help you decide which glasses are right for your prescription and athletic pursuits. Making Rx lenses for sports glasses can be tricky.

Notable site features: SportRx says that instead of speaking (or live-chatting) to a run-of-the-mill customer service staffer hidden in some obscure call center, you’re speaking with a “friendly SportRx Optician in sunny San Diego” who’s gone through a rigorous training regimen (the SportRx Academy) and is well-versed in various aspects of optics: refractive light, myopia, presbyopia, astigmatism and everything else you can think of. “What’s more,” the site says, “they have extensive training on the best sports frame and lens options on the planet.”

Current deals and coupons: $50 off RX orders more than $250 with code REXY50 (ends Oct. 18).

Shipping times: Around 14 days.

Screenshot by David Carnoy/CNET

Coastal shares some similarities to online retailer Zenni in that it leads with low prices and sporadic two-for-one deals around various holidays. It recently added a virtual-fit feature, and there’s an option to input the size of your current frames and the site will serve up options based on those measurements that will be a good fit for your face.

Coastal does offer some premium brand frames (Ray-Ban, Oakley and others), but that takes your price up to over $100 with lenses. 

Notable site features: Coastal has a philanthropic partnership with the Essilor Vision Foundation to improve the sight of people who can’t afford glasses. Coastal says that “for every pair of glasses bought, we will donate a pair of glasses to someone in need.”

Like Zenni, Warby Parker and others, it now has a virtual try-on feature.

Current deals and coupons: Get 40% off all lens upgrades with code LENSUP40.

Shipping times: Expect 10 to 14 days.

More online buying advice

The information contained in this article is for educational and informational purposes only and is not intended as health or medical advice. Always consult a physician or other qualified health provider regarding any questions you may have about a medical condition or health objectives.

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Story-Driven Spirit Guide Games – ‘Kena: Bridge of Spirits’ is a Beautiful Third-Person Adventure (TrendHunter.com)

Story-Driven Spirit Guide Games – ‘Kena: Bridge of Spirits’ is a Beautiful Third-Person Adventure (TrendHunter.com)

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Superhuman Open-World Adventure Games – ‘Project Athia’ is Specifically Designed for PlayStation 5 (TrendHunter.com)

Superhuman Open-World Adventure Games – ‘Project Athia’ is Specifically Designed for PlayStation 5 (TrendHunter.com)

(TrendHunter.com) Luminous Productions, a new development studio from Japanese game holding company Square Enix, is readying an action-packed open-world adventure game called ‘Project Athia.’

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(TrendHunter.com) Luminous Productions, a new development studio from Japanese game holding company Square Enix, is readying an action-packed open-world adventure game called ‘Project Athia.’

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Forgot your Mac’s password? Here’s how to get back into your locked-down computer – CNET

Dusting off and powering up an old MacBook only to realize you can’t remember the password is a frustrating experience. Each failed login attempt can cause confusion and even panic. Don’t worry, though. Apple knows that a forgotten password situation is a personal hell that many of us run into, which is why the MacOS software includes built-in features for this exact situation. 

There are a few different tools you can use, and the road you take to unlock your Mac without a password could depend on whether or not you linked your Apple ID to your user account on your Mac during setup. If you didn’t, that’s OK, there’s still another option to reset your account password. Here’s how to get started regaining control over your Mac computer.

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Getting locked out of your Mac is annoying. But don’t get too frustrated. 

Óscar Gutiérrez/CNET

Use your Apple ID to reset your password

Ideally, you’ll have linked your Apple ID to your user account on your Mac during the initial setup, which will make it possible to reset your user password with just a few clicks. 

After entering the wrong user password three times, you’ll be asked if you want to reset the password using your Apple ID, if it’s linked to your account. If you don’t see the message after your third attempt, your account isn’t linked to your Apple ID and you’ll need to use the method outlined below. 

mac-password-apple-idmac-password-apple-id

Using your Apple ID to reset your Mac password is an easy process. 

Jason Cipriani/CNET

Here’s what to do:

Enter your Apple ID email address and password, and follow the rest of the prompts to create a new password. When you change the password, you’ll see a prompt letting you know a new login keychain — what MacOS uses to store your passwords will be created, but your old keychain will remain saved on your Mac. If you ever remember your old password, you’ll be able to unlock the old keychain. 

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2:02

Use an Admin account

If you share your Mac with friends or family members and they forgot their password, odds are you’ll be able to reset it for them. The key here is that you need access to an Admin user account. 

Usually, the person who first set up the Mac has an admin account by default, but you can check by logging in to your account and opening System Preferences > Users & Groups and viewing the list of user accounts on your Mac. Just below the user name will be the account type — if it says “Admin” you can reset user passwords. 

To do so, from that same Users & Groups screen, click on the lock and enter your admin name and password when prompted. Next, select the user you need to reset the password for and then click on the button labeled Reset Password and follow the instructions. 

bypass-mac-user-passwordbypass-mac-user-password

Remember to write down the new passwords you have to create for fellow users of the same Mac. 

Jason Cipriani/CNET

Use Recovery Mode to reset your password

You’ll need to boot your Mac into Recovery Mode in order to access the password reset tool. I’ve found the easiest way to do that is to turn off your Mac. 

With your Mac turned off, press and hold the Command and R keys on your keyboard, then press the power button. Hold in Command+R until you see a progress bar show up below the Apple logo. You can also get into Recovery Mode by restarting your Mac and trying to time the keyboard combo of Command+R, but in my experience, starting with your Mac turned off is the most reliable method.

With your Mac now in Recovery Mode, click on Utilities in the menu bar followed by Terminal. A new window will show up, waiting for you to enter a command. Type “resetpassword” as one word, without the quotes, and press Return.

Close the Terminal window, where you will then find the Reset Password tool. A list of all user accounts on your Mac will be on display. To reset the password for your account, you’ll need to set a new password for all users. Make sure you write down the new password for anyone who shares your Mac. 

50-macbook-pro-16-inch50-macbook-pro-16-inch

If you use FileVault, you have two options to reset your user account password. 

Sarah Tew/CNET

If FileVault is enabled on your Mac

FileVault is an optional MacOS feature that encrypts your Mac’s hard drive and all of the data stored on it. You can turn it on during initial setup, or in System Preferences at a later time. 

If you have FileVault turned on, you have two additional options to reset your user password. You can wait up to a minute on the user login screen for a prompt to show up that instructs you to press the power button to restart the Mac into Recovery mode. Follow the instructions to restart your computer, after which you should see a Reset Password window show up. 

The other option is to use the Recovery Key that you should have written down when you enabled FileVault. Let’s be honest, most of us don’t do that, but if you did you can enter the recovery key when asked after three failed login attempts. Be sure to use upper case letters and to enter the hyphens — they’re required. 

Any method we outlined is an effective way of regaining access to your account, or if your child forgot their password. Of course, if you can use this to get into your Mac, so can someone else who has access to your computer. You can prevent that from happening, you’ll just need to be more proactive during setup with storing recovery keys and remembering your password. Here’s how to lock down your Mac.

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Shapeshifting Search Engine Laptops – The Conceptual Google PixelBookPro is Productivity-Focused (TrendHunter.com)

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Personalized Noise Filtration Earbuds – Jabra Elite 85t True Wireless Earbuds Have HearThrough Mode (TrendHunter.com)

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(TrendHunter.com) The Jabra Elite 85t true wireless earbuds are an upcoming portable audio solution for commuters and audiophiles alike that will provide them with a way to enjoy a carefree listening experience no…
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What to do if your first stimulus check still hasn’t arrived and why there could be a holdup – CNET

 stimulus-check-in-us-mail-envelope-cash-money-2020012

What’s the right way to report a missing stimulus check to the IRS? We’ll tell you.

Sarah Tew/CNET

When it comes to stimulus checks, the main focus is on whether Congress will reach a deal on a new stimulus package that would include a second stimulus check — but there are still millions of people who haven’t received the first stimulus check.

The IRS is working on sending the remaining payment to qualified individuals and coordinating with local and regional agencies to identify people who may not know they’re owed a payment. An estimated 9 million people who don’t normally file taxes, for example, can still claim their check by Oct. 15.

If you believe you’re owed a payment but it hasn’t arrived, follow these steps to track down and report your missing check to the IRS (scroll to the end for two phone numbers to call). If you received a stimulus check that didn’t include your dependents, here’s how to claim the money by Sept. 30. You can use our stimulus check calculator to get an idea of how much you might receive. And here are six important things to know about stimulus checks. We update this story often.

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3:03

I think my first stimulus check is late. When should I report it to the IRS? 

If you’re certain you meet the qualifications to receive the first stimulus check, these are warning signs that you should contact the IRS right now:

  • The Get My Payment tracking tool reports the IRS made your payment weeks ago and you haven’t received it (see below).
  • You received a confirmation letter from the IRS that your payment was sent, but you didn’t get the funds.
  • You think you accidentally threw your prepaid card or check in the trash (see below).
  • You suspect someone stole your check or otherwise defrauded you.

Keep reading for more on these issues and for phone numbers to call to contact the IRS.

Do I need to file another form with the IRS?

If you filed a 2018 or 2019 tax return or receive government benefits, the IRS should automatically send your check without you having to do anything. 

If, however, you’re a US citizen or permanent resident, had a gross income in 2019 under $12,200 — or $24,400 as a married couple — and didn’t file a return for 2018 or 2019, you may need to give the IRS a bit of information before it can process your payment. Head to the Non-Filers site and see if the IRS needs something from you.

The nonfilers tool will be available till Oct. 15, the IRS told CNET, and people who register for a payment using the tool before then will receive their check by the end of the year.

What if I received a confirmation letter in the mail but no check?

If you received a letter confirming the payment, but not the check, it’s time to reach out. The IRS protocol is to send the letter 15 days after issuing the payment. 

Postal mailboxPostal mailbox

Is your stimulus check inside?

Sarah Tew/CNET

Try the IRS Get My Payment tracking tool

It’s worth visiting the IRS’ online portal designed to track the status of your 2020 payment. Generally, it should tell you when your check will be processed and how you’ll receive it (for example, as a paper check in the mail). If the Get My Payment tool doesn’t give you information you can understand or says your check is on the way and you haven’t received it, you may need to eventually report the discrepancy to the IRS. 

What does the ‘Need More Information’ message from the Get My Payment app mean?

If the Get My Payment tool gave you a payment date but you still haven’t received your money, the IRS may need more information. Check the Get My Payment tool again and if it reports “Need More Information,” this could indicate that your check has been returned because the post office was unable to deliver it, an IRS representative told CNET.

After you see the “Need More Information” message, the online tool will let you enter your banking information to receive your payment straight to your bank account. The IRS said If you don’t provide your bank account information, the agency will hold your payment till it receives a current mailing address. Head to the IRS change-address page for how to update your address with the IRS.

What if I accidentally threw my first check or debit card away?

Four million people were to receive their stimulus money on a prepaid debit card called the Economic Impact Payment Card, instead of a paper check. The EIP card arrives in a plain envelope, the IRS said, with “Money Network Cardholder Services” as the sender. 

Some people, taking it for junk mail, may have mistakenly thrown these letters away. If you’ve misplaced or thrown away your card, the EIP card service has an FAQ on what to do if your card is lost or stolen. You can also call 800-240-8100 to request a replacement. It’s free, according to a spokesperson for the Treasury Department. To request a new card, press option 2 when prompted. 

However, the EIP card website says, “Your Card will be deactivated to prevent anyone from using it and a new replacement Card will be ordered. Fees may apply.”

We recommend calling the above number for a lost or stolen card and speaking to a representative.

Could the federal government have redirected my first payment?

If you owe child support, the IRS can redirect your payment to cover past-due support. The Bureau of the Fiscal Service will send you a notice if this happens.

Could the IRS have sent my first check to a closed bank account? 

Your check may have bounced back to the IRS if the agency tried to send your payment to a now-closed bank account or to a temporary prepaid debit card a tax preparer set up for you. If your payment was returned to the IRS, the agency will mail your check to the current address it has on file for you.

US currency: $20 and $100 billsUS currency: $20 and $100 bills

Where’s your stimulus money? A number of factors could be causing the holdup.

James Martin/CNET

What if my first payment was only a part of what I think I’m owed? 

A different, but related, issue could be a change in your income in 2020. In some cases, the IRS may owe you more money than you received if the income figure used to calculate your payment from your tax returns in 2018 or 2019 is less in 2020. 

Likewise, if you now have a new dependent, such as a child, who isn’t reflected on your tax returns, you may be owed more money. In either case, the IRS said, you can claim the additional amount on your 2020 tax return when you file next year. We recommend keeping a detailed record so you don’t forget. Here’s how to claim a missing dependent sooner than next year’s taxes.

What do I do if I suspect mail fraud or a scam?

Though it’s uncommon, you may believe you’ve been scammed out of your payment or had it stolen. The Federal Trade Commission has a website where you can report a stolen stimulus check. We’ve asked the IRS what other recourse you have if this situation applies to you, and we’ll update this article when we hear back. If you’re worried about theft, you can sign up for a free USPS service that will send you a picture of every piece of mail coming your way — including your stimulus payment.

How to call the IRS to ask about an absent stimulus check

If you do contact the IRS by phone, it’s a good idea to give yourself plenty of time for the call. We wouldn’t be surprised if call volumes are up, or if conversations take some time. It’s also a smart idea to gather your information in front of you before you make the call, like a copy of your most recent tax ID and the letter that the IRS sent if you received one. 

Within 15 days after it sends out your payment, the IRS should mail you a letter confirming the payment. At the bottom of the letter is a number you can call for more information: 800-919-9835.

In May, the IRS added 3,500 telephone representatives to help with potential problems regarding payments. The IRS help number is 800-829-1040.