Everything You Need to Know About Your Stimulus Check

Written by Tapasya Trivedi

At the end of March, the Senate approved a historic $2 trillion stimulus deal, which included a hefty $1,200 direct payment to US taxpayers who earned $75,000 in AGI or less. Now even though up to 80% of Americans will qualify for this check, there are still some guidelines you should understand before expecting a direct deposit from the IRS.

Who is eligible?

Here’s the easy answer: IF you have a social security number and are living in the US, you should be eligible for the refund payments. There are a few caveats:

  1. You must have filed a 2018/2019 tax return
  2. You must have not been claimed as a dependant on your 2018/2019 tax returns (for this reason, a lot of college students will be exempt)

How much money will I receive?

The stimulus check amounts vary depending on your income that was reported in your 2019 taxes (if you haven’t filled these for whatever reason, the IRS will go based off of your 2018 taxes). If you made less than $75,000 and filed as a single (aka as long as you’re not married), you’re eligible for the full $1,200 refund. If you’re married and filed jointly with your spouse, and you both collectively make less than $150,000, then you’re entitled to a $2,400 refund.

For people who make over $75,000 but less than $100,000, stimulus check payments will be reduced by $5 for every $100 of income that is above $75,000. See below for a breakdown of what your check will look like based on your income tier:

(insert table)

When will I receive my check?

You may have received it already! Secretary Treasury Steven Mnuchin is all over this. He said that the checks will be sent out within 3 weeks, starting April 15th (that is, if the IRS has all of your current info).

How will I receive my check?

If you've filed your taxes with the IRS in the past 2 years, your stimulus check will get direct deposited into the account where you've most recently received your tax refund. The payment should show up as pending for a few days until it gets deposited into your account. If you haven't received a tax refund in the past 2 years/have not set up direct deposit, then the IRS will be mailing your check to your last known home address on file.

What if I don't qualify for this check?

If you're a college student or a recent graduate, you may be out of luck here. As of now, there aren't any definite plans of additional financial assistance if you don't qualify for these stimulus checks. There is talk about a second wave of stimulus checks being sent out depending on how long of an impact coronavirus has on our economy, but again that is currently still just speculation.

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