While millions have already received COVID-19 relief checks, some of the most vulnerable demographics say they’ve been left behind. Veterans and people on social security told CBS News that they’re still waiting on their checks with no word from the IRS.

The Treasury Department has prioritized those whose information comes from its tax database, but that leaves those on federal benefits left at the back of the line.

Social Security recipient Mark Stevens, a Florida resident, told CBS News he might losing vital services.

"I'm having to put off everything — utility bills, cable. I had to be late on rent," Stevens said.

The IRS said on March 12 it would announce a payment date "shortly" for those on federal benefits, but has yet to do so. Stevens said he is down to $600 in his bank account.

"To me, 'shortly' is two to three days, not two weeks," he said. "People in my situation are feeling lied to."

S&P said it expects a rapid US recovery with the help of the massive stimulus programs approved by Congress
S&P said it expects a rapid US recovery with the help of the massive stimulus programs approved by Congress AFP / OLIVIER DOULIERY

Officials have said another wave of checks is due Wednesday, but this round will have more physical checks without instant delivery. They haven’t said whether recipients of federal benefits would be included.

Lawmakers have taken notice, demanding a timeline from the IRS.

“Some of our most vulnerable seniors and persons with disabilities, including veterans who served our country with honor, are unable to pay for basic necessities while they wait for their overdue payments,” read a letter from congressional Democrats.

Some of the frustration comes just from uncertainty: the IRS has set up an online tool for people to track the status of their stimulus checks, but the result it gives for those whose checks are pending is the exact same as for those not eligible at all.

"What was infuriating to me and lots of people out there was the fact that the IRS already had their direct deposit information," Los Angeles resident Sydney Chandler said. "You can't get an answer out of the IRS or out of the Social Security Administration."

The IRS has been swamped by a two-year backlog of unprocessed tax returns compounded by the need to coordinate stimulus payments. Another change of the stimulus package will likely force the unemployed to file amended returns, exacerbating the problem.