If you’re one of many – and by many, I mean a quarter million – couples who did not received a rebate check due to an error matching your spouse’s married name and Social Security number, I’ve got good news! The IRS has changed its position on this issue.

Last month, the IRS was adamant that rebate checks would only be mailed to those who showed a perfect match. But now, without additional comment, the IRS has announced that it mail checks this month to an additional 260,000 married taxpayers whose names did not match Social Security numbers. Letters announcing the change of position will be mailed to affected taxpayers in a few days; checks should arrive by the end of the month.

The IRS did not have much to say about this, other than comments posted on its web site. And they’re really, really sorry. See?

The IRS regrets the inconvenience for these affected taxpayers and will continue to work hard to deliver stimulus payments to qualifying taxpayers.

The lesson to be learned from all of this? Well, for one, even the IRS can change its mind. But more importantly, make sure that name changes following marriage (and divorce) are properly recorded with the Social Security Administration. While not all of the errors were attributable to taxpayers (the IRS shares some blame in all of this), ensuring that you’ve done your part to file the correct paperwork means that less likelihood of confusion down the road.

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Kelly Erb is a tax attorney and tax writer.

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