It has been a really tough year for Americans. Unemployment, coronavirus, businesses shutting down, concerns about sending your kids back to school, it's been hard to find a little sunshine in all this rain in 2020. But a tiny ray of sunshine might be closer than you think.

The Internal Revenue Service and US Treasury Department are telling Americans who paid their 2019 taxes on time that they can expect a tax refund interest check. Soon. Like, this week. According to New Orleans City Business, a statement from the IRS says the average payment will be around $18, and it will go out to approximately 13.9 million taxpayers, as early as this week. A notation on the check will say “INT Amount” and will identify it as a refund interest payment, and also tell you the interest amount.

If you filed your tax returns by the July 15th deadline this year, already received a refund in the past three months, or are going to receive a refund, you are eligible for the payment. Most of the checks will be separate from tax refunds, but not all.

If you received a refund by direct deposit, your tax interest refund will also be deposited into the same account. If you got your refund my mail, that is also how this check will be distributed.

The IRS also wants you to know that these payments are taxable by law, and anyone who receives one must report the interest on their 2020 federal income tax return that you file next year. That will be a Form 1099-INT.