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Tuesday, December 1, 2020

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Before we delve into how coronavirus might be affecting the stimulus check of individuals, we should start by asking what is stimulus check? And this begets the next question- what should individuals such as war veterans or uninformed people gather about stimulus checks and packages? 

To put it simply, the outbreak of coronavirus has brought forth several changes in the national and international economy. With the fears rising, and the subsequent economic fallout, the American government has brought out an economic stimulus check. This is something that was being talked over back when the outbreak was slowly rising. The plan has two major parts- one where several major industries are given bailouts- such as the airline sector. But the other part is much more important- for it secures funds for the citizens of America who have been ravaged by the pandemic. Goes without saying, the financial stress on families has exponentially increased as shops have been shut down- causing major stress. https://www.digitalmarketnews.com explain stimulus checks come into play. 

Coronavirus Stimulus Checks Update

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1. Up till the 5th of June, close to 159 million citizens received funds worth $266 billion. Amongst the states, California leads the way for stimulus checks 2020 with payments made to 17 million citizens on a net worth of $27 billion. 

2. The overall average payment has been around $1680.86

3. It has been estimated that over 160 million stimulus checks would be sent out in the coming months. 

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4. September 30 has been decided as the deadline day for Non-Filers to file for an EIP (Economic Impact Payment).

5. The IRS has been responsible for issuing EIPs through Direct Express and direct deposit from May 22 onwards. The stimulus checks have been sent to the same deposit account which the recipient uses for their monthly SSI payment. May 27 brought out paper checks that were soon mailed. 

6. The Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin announced on the 18th of May that almost 4 million payments would be conducted via prepaid debit card. MetaBank would be the intermediary through which the EIP (sponsored by the Treasury) would be sent. 

7. Several regions around the country- Guam, American Samoa, Puerto Rico, U.S. Virgin Islands, and others might soon start receiving their EIP from June. Their payments would be met by the tax authority in those states- and not the IRS. 

8. The IRS has installed a website portal called Get My Payment on their website- which taxpayers can log into and check their status. It is also advised that they provide information on their direct deposit. 

9. May 13 was set as the date when many taxpayers would be able to obtain a deposit on their EIP- rather than a paper check. 

10. People missing out on the $500 dependent children tax would still be able to get their stimulus check 2020- but they need to file a tax return for the year so that they can collect their payment. 

11. Most of the recipients received their VA benefits as well as their Supplemental Security Income in mid-May.

12. Representative payees and beneficiaries who receive their payments after being managed by someone else received their payments in May. 

Will There Be a Second Stimulus Check Payment?

Congress has had several discussions for the institution of another payment, which would be called the ‘CARES 2 Act’. This will possibly me a monthly stimulus check payment. But as of May, there wasn’t any clear picture on what the second round was going to look like. However, several stimulus check 2020 measures were proposed:

HEROES Act:

The Democrats in the house decided to unveil a stimulus check package of 3 trillion on the 12th of May. The House passed the bill on the 15th of May. According to the reports, the Senate would open negotiations with the House next. And, in the event that the HEROES Act was not passed, the two parties would nonetheless sit down to create a bit that could possibly generate cross-party support. The details for the stimulus check 2020 package involve:

1. The tribal, local, and state governments would secure $1 trillion.

2. The stimulus check payments for most Americans would be $1200, with a ceiling of $6000 every household. 

3. The unemployment benefits would also collect an additional $600 weekly. 

4. In order to mortgage payments, and subsidize rent, $175 billion would be allotted. 

5. All the student loans would be on hold until September- after which the situation would decide the future. 

6. Essential worker hazard pay would be allotted a further $200 billion. 

Back to Work Bonus:

June 25 saw the President of the United States mentioning to reporters that they would be bringing out another stimulus check package. He further stated that the stimulus checks 2020 would definitely be very generous. The Oval Office was also planning to install another $450 weekly bonus for workers who are returning from unemployment. The bonus would be added along with their wages for a limited period of time. And finally, they were thinking of reducing the payments made to unemployed citizens and bringing it down to $250 to $300. 

Monthly Economic Crisis Support Act:

Senators Harris, Sanders, and Markey came together to bring out a bill which would allow eligible taxpayers to secure payment of $2000 every single month. They would also be able to secure an additional $2000 every month if they have a dependent. In case they are married, they can submit a married filing- thereby getting $4000 per month. 

The Emergency Money for the People Act:

This would allot $2000 per month to every American above the age of 16 for a period of 1 year- what is essential is the qualification. 

Rent and Mortgage Cancellation Act:

This Act would ask for a nationwide cancellation of mortgage payments and rents for as long as coronavirus remained a pandemic- or for a year- whichever came faster. 

Heroes Fund:

There will be an increase of $25,000 in the premium pay of essential workers, along with a $15,000 incentive for essential worker recruitment. This would be done to secure and attract a workforce which the government badly needed to fight the pandemic. 

Monthly Payments:

Around 62 members of Congress drafted a letter to Congress urging them to start paying monthly. 

Getting America Back to Work Act:

This act would immensely help small industry owners to retain employees and hire new ones- due to the tax rebate check on the payroll of up to 80%. 

Why Stimulus Check Payment Amount Could Be Different Than Anticipated

1. In the event that a taxpayer did actually file in 2019, the agency might still be using the returns from 2018- in case the IRS could not finish the processing of the returns from 2019.

2. Claimed dependents wouldn’t be considered eligible to secure the additional stimulus check payment of $500. 

3. College students are the only acceptable dependents. 

4. Claimed dependents could be their parents and/or relatives- above the age of 17. 

5. Child support which was due in the past would be siphoned out of the stimulus check 2020 payment. 

What If The Stimulus Check Payment Amount is Incorrect?

If there is any discrepancy in the payment info they are receiving, the taxpayers could readily conduct a stimulus check status investigation. After that, they could file their return in the coming year which would allow them to accrue additional credit. 

How Americans Are Using Their Stimulus Check Payments?

1. Close to 85.5% of the population stated that their payment had been received by someone from the household. Their immediate family must have picked up the stimulus check 2020. 

2. Among all the respondents surveyed, close to 80% stated that they had used their stimulus checks on food, while the rest 77.9% mentioned that they had to use theirs on rent, and other expenses. These expenses were usually gas, internet, cellphone, electricity, and others. 

3. A solid chunk of the respondents- more than just the half- stated that they had used their stimulus checks 2020 to take care of the payments on products for personal care, and household supplies. 

4. 20% of the receivers decided to use the money on clothes. 

5. Around 8% mentioned using it to buy electronics or other such items that could be useful. 

6. Households, where the income was somewhere between $75000 and $100000, would usually have adults using the stimulus check to pay off debts or add into their savings. 

7. Households with an income less than $25000 per annum would use this money to chalk and meet their expenses.

Stimulus Checks 2020

This is quite possibly the most common piece of any bill- where a maximum non-taxable $1200 is allotted to individual filers of tax. Also, $2400 is allotted to joint filers with $500 for every qualifying child. 

Rebate Amounts for Recovery:

1. $1200 would be the maximum stimulus check payment made to individual tax filers. 

2. Couples who make an annual income of $75000 would receive $2400. 

3. Couples who earn more than $99,000 would be exempt from the stimulus. 

4. Every child would receive an additional $500. 

In case you want to know the stimulus check status, the stimulus checks phase out at:

1. For singles, the adjusted gross income would be $75000.

2. Household heads would receive up to $112,500.

3. Married couples would receive $150,000.

4. Payment is going to be reduced by about 5% for every $1000 that crosses $75,000. 

5. The stimulus check phases out completely at $99,000 for singles and around $198,000 for couples.

VA Benefits: Disabled Veteran, Pension, & Survivor Benefits Recipients:

Veterans who have been receiving benefits from the Department of Veteran Affairs which includes VA disability benefits, survivors’ benefits, and pensions are going to be held up to the same principles as anyone receiving SS, SSI benefits, and SSDI. Interestingly, these veterans would definitely qualify for anything remotely similar to stimulus checks. 

Active Duty Military:

Stimulus checks would be given to active members of the service- in accordance with the income guidelines that have been ascribed to them. And to make it inclusive, it would include every branch- army, navy, air force, marine corps, Space Force, and the coast guard.

Military Spouse with No SSN:

There is just a singular exception to the requirement for a valid Social Security Number- and that is the filing of a tax return by any military member. The spouse of the said member wouldn’t have to have an SSN in order for them to get any stimulus check payments. 

Social Security (SS) Recipients & Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI):

Any senior citizen who has continuously received SSDI payments and social security would be absolutely eligible for a stimulus check. For individuals whose income is $0, they would find themselves to be rebate-eligible only if they are not dependent on any other taxpayer. To make matters easier, there is leeway on income requirements. The stimulus check payments will be automatically deposited in their bank accounts- and therefore don’t need to have any action taken upon them. For those with children who qualify the benchmark- they will receive an additional $500. 

Supplemental Security Income (SSI) Recipients:

Stimulus check payments of an HHS nature would be received by SSI recipients and others who have their income depending solely on the benefits of non-taxable nature. Payments would be made to SSI recipients automatically through banks. The payments are supposed to be meted out the same way one would typically receive their benefit payments- paper check, or direct deposit. 

Social Security (or SSEB):

Social security holders involved in filing taxes simply because their income is supplemented through some other source or pension too would be eligible for economic impact payment that would be solely based on their tax returns. 

College Students:

Students who are not officially recognized dependents of their parents would definitely qualify for this. Usually, it is a full-time college student, mostly under the age of 24 who would be considered a dependent- in the event that their parents supply most of their earnings. For those who qualify, there are separate college stimulus check payments. 

Can I check the status of my stimulus package?

According to the IRS website, it is very easy to check your stimulus check status. All you need to do is log into the Get My Payment portal, and you would be directly linked. 

The features of payment status are:

1. Checking the stimulus check status. 

2. Confirming your mode of payment. 

3. Adding information about your direct deposit in the event that the IRS doesn’t have it. 

4. Entering your bank account information for the purposes of direct deposit if the IRS doesn’t have your direct deposit information. 

To check your stimulus check status, you need to submit the following:

1. Social Security Number, or ITIN

2. D.O.B

3. Address

4. Postal Code

If you are awaiting a refund, the IRS also has a page that is dedicated to refunds- where you can check your stimulus check status for the refund.

Who will receive the Economic Impact Payment automatically without taking additional steps?

Of all American citizens, most of them would be eligible for the Economic Impact Payment, and this includes:

1. Citizens who have already filed an income tax or filed for a tax refund for the year 2018 or 2019. 

2. Citizens who have received Social Security Disability Insurance benefits, along with Social security recipients, and survivors benefits. 

3. Citizens who have already accrued federal benefits from Railroad Retirement.

4. Recipients of VA Disability, VA Survivor Benefits, and VA Pension. 

When will Checks Be Mailed?

April to September:

Paper checks have been delivered from the third week of April, and have been continuing from thereon on a weekly basis at a rate of 5 million. People with the lowest AGI would be receiving their checks first, and people with a high AGI will receive their checks the last. And it has been estimated that all the checks would be delivered and received by September 11.

When will the Stimulus Payments be Direct Deposited?

End of April to Early May:

Recipients of Social Security retirement, Railroad Retirement benefits, disability benefits, VA benefits, and Supplemental Security Income would receive the stimulus check payments if they also receive their benefits through direct payment. 

Early May:

Recipients of SSI received their payments in the early of May- quite in the same way how they received their normal benefits. 

When and How are Stimulus Check Payments Made?

1. There is no application necessary to receive the payment.

2. Payments will be done via direct deposit. Most of the payments were done by the mid of April, but a few stragglers had their payments completed in the following months. 

3. The check you will receive will be given through the same method that the IRS uses to refund. In the event that you are not eligible for a direct deposit, you will find your check mailed to the address of your latest tax return. 

4. Payments via electronic medium were first deposited on the 11th of April, and the ones with paper checks were sent from the 24th. It is thereby expected that paper checks with the stimulus checks would take some time to reach the lower-income individuals first. 

5. Most Americans would actually not have to do anything to receive any rebates since the IRS has been using their 2019 tax returns (if they have been at all filed) or the returns from 2018 if they haven’t. 

Holders of Direct Express Card:

Economic Impact Payments would be paid by the IRS to those with an existing DEC account. This also includes Social Security, VEteran, SSI, and Railroad Retirement Board recipients. 

Non-Filers

Citizens who have children below the age of 17 and are not in the position to file taxes would have to use the tool provided by the IRS so that they can put extra banking information to conduct stimulus check payments. 

Income Determination and Taxes:

1. Someone’s income will always be determined by that person’s adjusted gross income- also known as the AGI. The checks for rebate recovery have always been non-taxable- and thereby not considered as income. 

2. If the income is lower in 2020 than it was in 2019, credit that is additional will be refunded when you file your tax return for 2020. 

How To Get a Stimulus Check if You Didn’t File a 2018 or 2019 Tax Return

1. For individuals who are on Social Security, Railroad retirement pension, or SSDI program, they can simply use their Social Security Benefit Statement, or Social Security Equivalent Benefit Statement which can be directly used to get the stimulus check. 

2. In the event that you are not a recipient of any pension or retirement benefit, all you need is a tax return file of 2019. 

3. For those with 0 income, they are supposed to do the same as above.

4. A free tax return can be filed by those who have their income below $69,000.

Free Stimulus Check Registration with TurboTax, FreeTax USA

TurboTax got into a partnership with the IRS to create the free Stimulus Check registration- set up for those who couldn’t file the required tax returns to fully enjoy their stimulus check payments. This registration has been designed to bring out the minimum tax return with the IRS. The IRS, on the other hand, has all the information that is needed to receive their payment through check. Direct deposit is usually recommended by the IRS- so that the stimulus checks can be reached out to them much faster.

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