President Joe Biden recently signed the American Rescue Plan (a $1.9 trillion coronavirus stimulus package) into law, paving the way for another round of stimulus checks to be sent to many Americans. If you have direct deposit information on file with the IRS, there’s a good chance you’ve already received your payment. But if you’re still waiting or if you’re curious why you received the amount you did, we’re here to break down this third round of checks, from eligibility requirements to how to track your payment.
Who Is Eligible & How Much Should I Expect?
Single tax filers can receive as much as $1,400 for their direct payment, and joint tax filers can receive up to $2,800. The American Rescue Plan also makes dependents (even adult dependents) eligible for the $1,400 payments, meaning a family of four could receive up to $5,600, according to the White House.
Here are the eligibility requirements and how payments are being phased out around the income limits, according to the IRS.
- Single adult: If you filed taxes as a single individual, you are eligible for the full $1,400 payment if your adjusted gross income was $75,000 or less. Single adults making more than $75,000 but less than $80,000 are still eligible for a direct payment, but the amount decreases as it approaches the 80,000 cap.
- Head of household: If you filed taxes as a head of household, you are eligible for the full $1,400 payment if your adjusted gross income was $112,500 or less. A head of household making more than $112,500 but less than $120,000 is still eligible for a direct payment, but the amount decreases as it approaches the $120,000 cap.
- Couples: If you filed taxes jointly, you and your partner are eligible for a full $2,800 if your adjusted gross income was $150,000 or less. A couple making more than $150,000 but less than $160,000 is still eligible for a direct payment, but the amount decreases as it approaches the $160,000 cap.
Much like in the previous rounds of checks, people receiving Social Security benefits, Supplemental Security Income benefits, Railroad Retirement benefits, or Veterans Affairs benefits should automatically qualify for a payment.
If you fall somewhere in the middle of an income threshold, you can use this calculator from Omni to estimate how much your payment will be.
Which Year Are Payments Based On?
The payments are based on your most recent tax filing. In other words, if you’ve filed your tax return early for 2020, your 2020 income will determine your eligibility. If you haven’t filed a tax return for 2020 yet, your payment will be based on your 2019 tax return.
When Will I Get My Stimulus Check?
People began receiving direct deposit payments in mid-March, and that process is still ongoing. However, the process of sending physical checks and prepaid debit cards takes longer, so if you are expecting a physical payment, you might be waiting for a little while. The IRS said via press release in mid-March that the mailing process would occur “in the coming weeks,” so feel free to check for updates on your payment.
How to Track My Payment
For the previous checks, the IRS instituted a way to track your stimulus check called Get My Payment. If you are searching for a status update, this is still your best resource to figure out when you can expect your payment to arrive. Follow that link and click the blue Get My Payment button for news.
Other Facts About the American Rescue Plan
Direct payments are just one part of this legislation. The White House released a fact sheet on what the American Rescue Plan includes. Individuals and families should also know the new legislation:
- Extends enhanced unemployment benefits until September
- Provides aid to help cover back rent and mortgage payments
- Increases the Child Tax Credit
- Boosts Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits by 15%