Published on 11/01/2021
While March 2020 brought the upsetting news of country-wide curbs and an economic slowdown due to the coronavirus pandemic, there was also a glimmer of hope. A coronavirus economic package was passed in the House to relieve people who might have lost jobs to the pandemic or maybe working at a pay cut.
Under the CARES Act, the first round of Stimulus payments has almost been paid to the recipients who filed for it. And now, the second round of stimulus checks is almost here. The payments are being dished out faster than the first round in 2020.
Amid huge uproar in Congress, the CARES Act 2021 was signed by President Donald Trump right before the year came to an end.
Naturally, there is a lot of commotion and confusion about the second stimulus checks- much like the first round. Therefore, we debunk a few myths, inform you better with all that you need to know about the latest stimulus package.
Second stimulus check
Unlike the first round, there will not be much fretting that you will have to do to get the second stimulus check. Even the senior citizens and those retired are also eligible to get the $600 per person (given that they meet all the norms). People with an income and those without an income automatically qualify to receive the second stimulus payment. Even incarcerated and convicted felons are also well within the law to get a check provided they meet all the eligibility criteria. The amount you receive in the second stimulus payment is entirely nontaxable and it won’t affect other federal benefits.
The payments will be credited to you automatically. Each person stands to receive $600 under the new package. Married couples will get $1,200 per couple in line with the latest norms. Those with children will get an additional $600 per qualifying child.
All persons despite their income are entitled to the second round of stimulus payments. However, the amount of payment to be disbursed will keep on decreasing for individuals earning more than $75,000 in a year. The same clause of deduction applies to married couples or joint filers with an income of more than $150,000. The amount of checks for people earning more than this threshold will begin to phase out. This means that the amount you will be entitled to will go down as your income starts to go up. For every $100 of income that goes up after $75,000 for a person, $5 will be cut from the $600 check. For individuals, the stimulus payment will get completely phased out if they earn more than $87,000 in a year and for joint filers, the payment will get phased out completely if the joint income is more than $174,000.
Eligibility for a second stimulus check
Children only below the age of 17 will qualify as dependents for an additional $600 for each child when the payments are being made. Any child over the age of 17 will not qualify for the $600 payment. The child living with you has to be related to you in some manner to qualify for the same. You can claim a check for your foster child as well.
The key eligibility criteria for getting a stimulus payment is having a Social Security Number. You need to have your social security number and of your dependents for whom you intend to claim a check as well. Married coupled and joint filers will have to furnish an ITIN number to get a single check for both the parties. However, if you have a child, it is imperative to have a social security number in addition to an ITIN number for your child to get the $600.
Unlike the first round of stimulus payments, the second stimulus check won’t be seized for child support. There are no offsets or debts with the second round of checks.
Getting the check
There are multiple routes to getting the payment this time. There also is a provision for the payment to directly be credited to your bank account. Corresponding to the norms, the direct deposit payments have already begun to be disbursed. Mailing of paper checks has also been started from December 30. Understandably, the paper check will take more time to reach their recipients than direct deposits.
If the direct deposit payments don’t reach you, it means you could get the payments in the form of a debit card or a paper check. People who will receive debit cards and paper checks will start receiving them after January 2021.
In case you have recently changed your bank, your old bank will receive the payment and return it to the IRS. Post receiving the payment from the bank, the IRS will send you the payment as a paper check.
The IRS will send the debit card or the paper check to your last updated address via mail. For this, the IRS will first send you a notice about the amount of the check and the mode of the payment at your address. This will make sure that the IRS mails the check to your correct, updated address. If you have recently moved and changed houses, you will have to fill the Federal Form 8822 to formally change your address for government record.
Checking the status of your check
The IRS recommends using the ‘Get My Payment’ tool on the IRS’ website to get an update on your stimulus check. Due to high traffic on the app, it is recommended that you check later for an update.
The norms of getting the second stimulus check are not the same as the first one. We understand that all the information can be quite a handful for anyone. Feel free to reach out to us at [email protected] for assistance.