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COVID19

All You Need To Know About The COVID-19 Economic Stimulus Check

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U.S. citizens and businesses continue to endure major financial setbacks due to the global economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. However, the U.S. government has provided several means to reach out to every American citizen. The first and most extensive stimulus checks were released in March 2020. This included a $500 stimulus check for eligible dependent children. 

Following the second wave of the COVID-19, U.S. lawmakers passed the COVID-19 relief legislation. Also, they promised a new round of stimulus checks worth billions of dollars in December. This legislation includes a $900 billion stimulus spending. The aim of the money was to provide financial assistance to struggling American families and businesses. This second round of stimulus checks was worth $600. However, only eligible individuals under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Stability Act (ESA) received it. Here are all the details you need to know about the second round of stimulus checks.

Who qualifies for the stimulus check?

money for the needy

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Obviously, not everyone is eligible for the new stimulus check. You have to be a U.S. citizen or an alien U.S. resident, dependent on your tax returns, and have a Social Security Number. Members of mixed-status families are also eligible. If some family members have their social security number and some do not, they still qualify for the second stimulus check.

Individuals who earn up to $75,000 and couples who earn less than $150,000 are eligible to receive the stimulus check’s full amount. Also, U.S. citizens who are married to foreign nationals without a social security number are qualified for the stimulus check. Finally, taxpayers with children under age 17 will receive an additional $600 payment for each child.

Is there going to be a second stimulus check?

Yes. A second stimulus check has been signed and approved by the President Trump administration. It will be distributed to eligible or qualified individuals. The second stimulus check is about half the amount of the first stimulus check. The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) approved amount for the second stimulus check was $600 per eligible person ($1200 for married couples).

When can I expect my payment?

Stimulus

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By now, everyone should have received their stimulus payment. The cut-off date set by the IRS for the second stimulus checks was January 15, 2021. The $900 billion stimulus package was scheduled to be distributed to eligible persons. The methods of delivery include direct deposits, paper stimulus checks, or Economic Impact Payment (EIP) cards sent as mails. If you qualify and haven’t received your $600 stimulus check, there are ways to receive the payment that IRS owes you. 

Will I get a stimulus check if I didn’t file taxes?

2020 taxes

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If you didn’t file your tax returns or register with the non-filer tool set up on IRS.gov, you will not receive a stimulus check. You will have to wait until you file for your 2020 tax returns and get a tax credit. 

Will I get a payment if I didn’t file 2019 taxes?

The second stimulus checks are primarily issued based on the 2019 tax return. If you did not get one, you can apply for a tax credit when you file income taxes with the IRS. Individuals who receive social security benefits—retirement, elderly, or people with disability—but didn’t file for the 2019 tax returns (because of how little they earn), will receive the second stimulus check. This is according to the information on the 2019 forms SSA-1099 and RRB-1099 sent to the IRS.

If you didn’t file your 2019 tax returns, you could claim the second stimulus check while filing for your 2020 tax returns. Also, individuals who registered with the non-filer tool set up on the IRS.gov platform should receive the second stimulus payment. The distribution will be through other means instead of a direct deposit.

What should I do if I didn’t get my stimulus check?

If you qualify for the stimulus check but haven’t received yours yet, you can still get it. However, unlike the first stimulus check, you cannot directly request payment from IRS. There is an opportunity for you to claim your second economic impact payment. You can do this while filing for your 2020 tax return if you qualify for them. 

In the 2020 tax return file, there is a new tax credit referred to as the “Recovery Rebate Credit”. You can claim your second economic impact payment using the Recovery Rebate Credit. The good news is, this new tax credit isn’t based on your 2018 or 2019 Adjusted Gross Income (AGI) but your 2020 AGI. This gives you a better chance at claiming your second stimulus payment, especially if you lost your job during the pandemic. You’ll need to file your 2020 Form 1040 or 1040-SR to claim your economic stimulus payment before the deadline. 

Furthermore, there may be other reasons why your issued $600 didn’t come through. Contact IRS at 1.800.240.8100 if the ‘Get My Payment Tool’ shows that your payment was made by IRS a while ago. If you got a letter from the IRS confirming that your payment was sent but yet to receive it, contact the IRS. Also, if you accidentally disposed of your EIP debit card, contact the IRS directly. The same is true if you suspect your check was stolen or you were defrauded.

Who is not eligible for a stimulus check?

Individuals who aren’t eligible for the second stimulus check include immigrants without a valid social security number, adult dependents. Adult dependents are classified as elderly or disabled dependents, unemployed high-wage earners, and high-wage earners. 

Definition of high-income earners?

Individuals who make up to $87,000 and couples earning up to $174,000 will not receive the new stimulus check. Also, taxpayers registered as household heads and earning up to $124,500 will not receive a stimulus payment. This is because the amount allotted to each person drops or falls by $5 per every $100 above the income threshold. This is according to the CARES Act of March 2020.

Individuals who earned over $87,000 in 2019 but were unemployed in 2020 will not receive the new stimulus check payment. High school and college students aged 17 or above who are registered or claimed as dependents under their parents or guardians will not receive a stimulus check. If you still have some questions concerning the second stimulus payment, reach out to the IRS through their helpline, email, or visit the IRS.gov site for directives.

Will There be More Stimulus Checks?

46th President

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President Joe Biden made it clear that he wanted to issue another round of stimulus checks the day he took office. Since becoming the leader of the United States he proposed a $1.9 trillion stimulus package. However, this plan has been more controversial than previous COVID-relief packages with the extra additions Biden wrote into it. In addition to an additional $1,400 per person is stimulus money, the package includes:

  • Stimulus money for undocumented residents
  • Rental assistance
  • An extension to the eviction moratorium
  • Increase to the food stamps benefits for struggling families
  • Increase to the child care benefits
  • Assistance with health insurance costs
  • Vaccine distribution
  • Increase in COVID testing
  • Increase to school funding
  • Extend the pause on student loan repayment
  • Increase to the federal minimum wage

Conclusion

Perhaps, the most controversial part of the proposed $1.9 trillion package is the increase to the federal minimum wage. Opponents to the plan feel that increasing the minimum wage will decimate small businesses and the restaurant industry that has already been struggling for the past year. While Republicans are adamant that the bill will not pass, Democrats who support the bill are pushing forward. Do you think the $1.9 trillion stimulus package will pass? Let us know your thoughts in the comment box below. 

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