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On March 11, 2021, President Joe Biden signed the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 into law. Along with an extension of federal unemployment insurance benefits through Sept. 6, 2021, and an increase to the current child tax credit for 2021, this plan includes Economic Impact Payments, commonly known as stimulus checks, for millions of Americans. Learn more about who will receive money, how much and how to find the status of stimulus checks.
Who Will Receive Direct Payments In The American Rescue Plan
An estimated 89% of tax filers will receive a third direct payment worth up to $1,400 for each individual and dependent. Eligibility and payment amounts are determined by income.
The IRS will use the most recent tax returns to ascertain the status of stimulus check eligibility. For instance, if you already filed your income taxes for 2020, the IRS will use the amounts from that return. If you have not yet filed this year, the IRS will review your 2019 tax return to determine whether you are eligible and, if so, how much you will receive.
People who submitted their information via the non-filer portal before November 21, 2020, will be reviewed as well, although the IRS has since closed the tool.
A man’s hand holds a letter with a covid aid check from the USA government
Anyone with an adjusted gross income (AGI) less than $75,000 (less than $112,500 for head-of-household filers and less than $150,000 for married couples filing a joint return) will receive $1,400 for each individual and dependent. That amount decreases if your AGI is above the listed amounts. Payments are phased out completely for single filers with an AGI above $80,000, head-of-household filers with an AGI over $120,000, and married couples filing jointly with an AGI exceeding $160,000.
Kiplinger offers a Third Stimulus Check Calculator that you can use to find out if you are eligible and how much you can expect to receive.
How To Find The Status Of Stimulus Checks
White House press secretary Jen Psaki said in a press briefing on Thursday that people can expect to start seeing direct deposits hit their bank accounts as early as this weekend.
People who used direct deposit when filing their income tax returns typically received their stimulus money in the first wave of prior payments, so this will likely hold true for the third round of checks. Paper checks are typically sent out second, and EIP cards will go out last.
The “Get My Payment” portal on the IRS website is now active, and you can use it to find out the status of stimulus checks.
While you can’t control when or how you receive a payment, there are a few things you can do that could help. First, make sure the IRS and USPS have your correct address on file. If you recently moved and have not filed a change of address, now is a good time to do so. You can update the information directly with the IRS, as well.
If your banking details have changed and you have not yet filed your 2020 income tax return, consider doing so right away with your updated account information. The bank will return the payment to the government if the account information is incorrect, and you will need to file for a Recovery Rebate Credit to get that money back with your tax return.
Pay attention at the mailbox, as well. Some people inadvertently trashed the paper checks and EIP cards they received for prior stimulus payments thinking they were nothing more than junk mail.
Note that the White House stated that it will take several weeks to send out over 100 million payments and the IRS and Treasury have until December 31 to ensure all payments have been sent, so if you don’t get your payment right away, keep an eye on the status of stimulus checks coming your way. Chances are, you’ll have it before long.
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