2020 Stimulus Checks — What You Need to Know
By Todd Whalen - May 1, 2020
The first thing on everyone’s mind at the moment is the $1200 stimulus check they’re expecting from the government—perhaps you’ve already received yours, or perhaps you’re still eagerly waiting. In any case, you likely have some pressing questions about the 2020 stimulus checks, and we’re here to offer simplified answers.
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How Are The 2020 Stimulus Checks Distributed?
If you filed taxes in 2018 and/or 2019 and your income qualifies you for a stimulus check, then the IRS has your information on file, and you’ll receive the check automatically.
Assuming that your most recent tax return included your correct direct deposit information, then you can expect an infusion of funds to arrive in your account seamlessly. If your banking information (or address) has changed since your most recent tax return, use the IRS portal to update it.
The good news is, if the IRS cannot locate any banking data for you, they’ll simply mail you a check. This means you’ll have to wait longer to receive stimulus funds, but you can rest assured that they will reach you.
Who Qualifies For Payment?
Any single person whose most recent AGI (Annual Taxable Income listed in your tax return) is $75,000 or less will receive a payment of $1,200. For single individuals who make more than $75,000, the payment is reduced by 5% incrementally until reaching the $99,000 mark. Anyone who makes more than $99,000 a year will not receive a stimulus check.
Married couples making less than a combined $150,000 AGI will receive $2,400; payments follow the same incremental phasing out in 5% blocks until being eliminated once a couple’s combined AGI reaches $198,000.
Each qualifying child adds up to $500 to the payment, but that amount is subject to the same 5% reduction.
It’s worth noting that if your AGI has gone up considerably since 2018 and you have yet to file your 2019 taxes, you could obtain some extra money by holding off on filing. Although stimulus checks are technically meant to be based on the 2020 tax year, the government is forced to rely upon the most recent information they have on record; if you made $70,000 in 2018, but now make $80,000, you could enjoy the full benefits of the stimulus check by simply waiting to file your taxes, and you won’t have to pay that money back.
What About Special Circumstances?
If you don’t have a filing requirement (such as people who receive social security), then the IRS will still send you a payment so long as you update your banking information through their portal.
If you owe the IRS, money, you can still receive your stimulus check without fear that the IRS will come after you. The same is true if you haven’t filed taxes for many years. In fact, this is an excellent opportunity to get back in the good graces of the IRS since most of their collections division is currently shut down, giving you time to figure out a payment plan.
If we can help you establish a plan for turning your 2020 stimulus check into an opportunity for rectifying financial issues, please call 303-753-6040.