To qualify for a payout, you have to be a U.S. resident with a social security number. You don’t need to have paid any taxes recently, but you must have at least filed your paperwork or fall under one of the special eligibility categories such as receiving SSI.
Have you filed 2019 taxes?
yes
Filing status
single
How many kids?
Income in 2019 (AGI)
$
You will receive
$

Second Stimulus Check Calculator - $900 Billion Bill

By Jasmine J Mah and Bogna Szyk
Last updated: Jan 06, 2021

This calculator was last updated on Jan 5, 2021. We will continually update the tool as new information gets published.

Update December 21, 2020 3:16 PM PST - The calculator now reflects the contents of the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021, which is a proposal published December 21, 2020 and has a key section called "COVID-related Tax Relief Act of 2020"

Update December 22, 2020 7:12 AM PST - The bill proposal was voted on late last night in two parts and overwhelmingly passed with bipartisan support. The second vote, which included the section on coronavirus stimulus and relief, was passed 359-53.

Update December 23, 2020 - President Trump has called for an increase of the stimulus payment from $600 to $2000. Whether the bill will be amended is to be seen in coming days.

Update December 28, 2020 - President Trump has signed the $600 stimulus bill yesterday. Today the House of Representatives passed a measure to increase the stimulus checks to $2000 per individual and per dependent. We will wait to see if and when the Senate considers and votes on the new measure.

After months of back-and-forth and with the end of 2020 drawing near, US congressional leaders have finally reached an agreement on a new $900 billion stimulus bill on late Sunday afternoon, December 20, 2020, with the vote passing Monday evening. The new bill is a much-needed piece of good news as this week, ending December 26, 2020, is the last one covered by the CARES Act's extended unemployment programs. Over 150 million Americans who benefited from the CARES Act are now waiting their second stimulus check.

While a vaccine is on the horizon, the struggle continues, and it's simply not business as usual yet. Coronavirus cases are still on the rise, hospitals are being overwhelmed again, and a second wave of social distancing regulations and curfew rules are already underway in some states.

Note that this stimulus check calculator does not address every possible exceptional situation. For more information, we encourage you to see our FAQ section to find any additional information on the coronavirus relief package as we know it.

How does the calculator work?

To check how much you're eligible for, all you need to do is fill out a couple of fields:

  1. You need to have filed your tax return in 2019. Pick the appropriate option in the calculator.
  2. Pick your filing status - either single, married, or head of household (applicable in the case of single parents, for instance).
  3. Input the number of child dependents under the age of 17. Unfortunately, just like the CARES Act, only child dependents are eligible for stimulus payments under the proposed bill.
  4. Input your AGI (adjusted gross income) - you can find it on your tax form.
  5. That's it - the calculator will tell you how much you'll likely receive!

Who is eligible for the stimulus? Where do you sign up?

All working Americans (that is, those that filed their last tax return) or those on Social Security will be considered, similar to how they were considered in the CARES Act. Admittedly, not everyone will get financial support, since the amount given depends heavily on your yearly income.

The actual proposal states that if your status is a "nonresident alien" (that is, someone who has not passed the green card test or the substantial presence test), you would not be eligible for the stimulus check. The bill summary explains that even if you did not file 2019 taxes, you may still be eligible:

"Treasury may issue advance payments for Social Security Old-Age, Survivors, and Disability Insurance beneficiaries, Supplemental Security Income recipients, Railroad Retirement Board beneficiaries, and Veterans Administration beneficiaries who did not file 2019 returns based on information provided by the Social Security Administration, the Railroad Retirement Board, and the Veterans Administration."

The authorities will get all the information they need to send the money from your tax return. That means that you don't need to fill out any documents or stand in a long queue. Once calculated, the sum will be transferred to you using the information provided in your tax return. If there is no information for a direct transfer, they will mail you a coronavirus stimulus check. As you might have expected, that option is bound to take longer.

Stimulus check: How much will I get?

While the income brackets of the new bill are the same as the previous CARES Act, the amounts you will receive will be different:

  1. The more you earn, the less you get. Every American that earns $75,000 a year or less is eligible to receive $600. If you earn more than that, the stimulus check will be proportionally lower (5% or $5 for every $100 of additional income). This means that the benefits will phase out at a lower income than the CARES Act since the base benefit amount is smaller.
  2. There's additional money for every child. A married couple or a single parent can obtain an extra $600 for every child dependent under 17 (this is $100 more than the CARES Act's $500 per child dependent).
  3. The support for married couples is calculated together. This means that a couple is eligible to receive $1,200 if their total income doesn't exceed twice the number mentioned for a single person, i.e., it is not higher than $150,000. We still add the $600 for every child and again, their checks will be reduced on a sliding scale. If only one spouse has an SSN, the couple will still be eligible for a payment of $600.
  4. In special cases, such as being a single parent, the rules are less strict. If you qualify as the "head of household," you are eligible for $600 if you earn up to $112,500. Similarly to the first point, the more you exceed that number, the less you will get.

When will I get my stimulus check?

If the new bill gets signed before Christmas, which is highly probable, the checks will be distributed just after the New Year. It means you might be getting one as soon as 15 days from now! Steven Mnuchin also reportedly said that "People are going to see this money at the beginning of next week."

Since it's the IRS that will be distributing the money, people who are already in their database will receive the checks the fastest.

Twitter reacts to $600 stimulus checks

FAQ

Do I qualify for the stimulus check?

Every American that filed their 2019 tax return, or those on Social Security, will get a check as long as they fall within the qualifying income brackets.

How much will I get?

The sum you receive depends on your yearly income, your marital status, and the number of child dependents under 17 years that you have. For specific calculations, we encourage you to try out our stimulus check calculator for yourself.

Where do I apply to get the payment?

You don't. If you've included your bank account number in your recent tax return, you'll receive a direct transfer. If not, the authorities will mail you a check.

How to claim the stimulus payment?

The payment will be transferred directly to the bank account you've included in your recent tax return. If you haven't included any, you'll get a check by mail.

Do I have to pay it back?

No, it's yours forever.

Will the payments be taxed?

No, you pay no income tax on the amount received, as it comes in the form of a tax credit.

What if I didn't file taxes in 2019?

Even if you didn't file taxes in 2019, you may be eligible under certain categories. The bill summary states:

"Treasury may issue advance payments for Social Security Old-Age, Survivors, and Disability Insurance beneficiaries, Supplemental Security Income recipients, Railroad Retirement Board beneficiaries, and Veterans Administration beneficiaries who did not file 2019 returns based on information provided by the Social Security Administration, the Railroad Retirement Board, and the Veterans Administration."

What if only one spouse has an SSN?

The house summary of the bill confirms that if only one spouse has an SSN, the couple will still be eligible for a payment of $600.

Why is the calculator phasing out earlier than for the CARES Act?

The new proposal uses the same phase-out principle as the CARES Act, which was a 5% reduction for every dollar of income greater than the limit. Since the new base amount of $600 is less than the previous amount of $1200, the money will phase out sooner since the rule stayed the same.

Jasmine J Mah and Bogna Szyk
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