With thepresumably a flash in the pan, President Joe Biden and Democratic lawmakers are moving forward to turn Biden’s proposal into a law that can . That includes hammering out any and all changes to qualifications to receive a of up to .
With the Biden plan, we already know how some of therequirements could change for and families with . And the biggest unknown for the administration’s proposal is the for the , which could change eligibility in more ways than one. We’ll go over what you should know about potential new requirements. But it’s also important to know how factors like your , , and could affect things, plus specific rules and exceptions for and some people in .
Knowing these past and future qualifications will help determine whether thefor you and , or if you still need to or potentially even . In the future, it’ll help you understand if you should and how . This story was recently updated.
The third stimulus check may include money for more dependents
would open up eligibility requirements to . Dependents over age 16 didn’t qualify for the first and second checks, but a change here would make college students, and people of any age with certain disabilities entitled to receive money as part of the household total.
That change, if it were to happen, would include roughly 13.5 million adult dependents, according to the People’s Policy Project.
Eligibility requirements for ‘mixed-status’ families changed with the second check and could again for the next one
In the, a US citizen and noncitizen spouse are both as long as they have Social Security numbers. This has been referred to as a “mixed-status” household when it comes to citizenship. Households with were left out of the first check.
would in a , potentially including families with citizen children and noncitizen parents.
It’s unclear if these previously excluded groups would receive the maximum amount. As we saw with the second stimulus check, dramatic changes can and do happen in the.
In the CARES Act from March, households with a person whoweren’t eligible to receive a stimulus check, even if one spouse and a child were US citizens.
More people could qualify for Biden’s $1,400 stimulus payment if the rules stay the same
When the dust settles on another round of, it’s possible we , or perhaps there will be additional rules governing who receives it.
But let’s say that a, or really any amount over $600, more people will automatically qualify for a partial payment than with the $600 stimulus check. That’s assuming would stay the same — it relies on income limits based on your . (More below for people who .)
One way to explain how the size of the maximum payment ($1,200 and $600 for the first two checks) can change how many people would get a check is shown in the chart below. In a simplified sense, you got the whole amount if you made below a certain amount. If you made more than that, you got a partial payment. If you made “too much” money, you got nothing.
It turns out that the lower maximum check amount in the second check dropped that income limit, so some people who got the first check didn’t get the second. In reverse, a larger third check could mean more people will get a partial check, in addition to the larger payment size overall. For the sake of simplicity, these income limits don’t include qualified children. You can use ourto estimate what you’d get in a $1,400 stimulus check.
$600 second stimulus check income limits
|AGI to receive full amount (both stimulus checks)||Second stimulus check upper income limit (AGI)||First stimulus check upper income limit (AGI)|
|Single tax filer||Under $75,000||$87,000||$99,000|
|Head of household||Under $112,500||$124,500||$146,000|
|Married, filing jointly||Under $150,00||$174,000||$198,000|
The figure in the first column above represents the lower income limit to receive the full amount. Above that figure, your check amount would decrease on a sliding scale the higher your AGI was, until it hits the second column, which is the most you can make before you’re disqualified. The third column represents the upper limit from the first check.
Would dependents be eligible for $500, $600 or nothing this time?
With the second stimulus check, each— age 16 and younger — added $600 apiece to the household payment. There was no cap on how many children you could claim for a payment. That total increased the amount per child from $500 in the first check, even as the per-adult maximum decreased.
If the third check under Biden’s plan includes the roughly 13.5 million adult dependents who weren’t counted before, according to the People’s Policy Project, there will be some additional questions to answer. For example, it isn’t clear if all dependents would qualify for more money in a third payment, or only those who were omitted in Round 2. And we still haven’t heard whether the amount per dependent would be $500, $600 or some other number.
A previous stimulus check proposal advocated for a limit of three dependents of any age — time will tell if that reenters the conversation or not.
Who qualifies for a second stimulus check
|Qualifying group||Covered in final law|
|Individuals||An AGI of less than $87,000|
|Head of household||An AGI of less than $124,500|
|Couple filing jointly||An AGI less than $174,000|
|Children under 17 years old||$600 apiece, no limit on number of children|
|Families with noncitizen spouse||Provided they meet other qualifications|
|US citizens living abroad||Yes, same as CARES|
|Citizens of US territories||Yes, same as CARES, with payments handled by each territory|
|SSDI and other tax nonfilers||Yes, but may require an extra step to claim (more below)|
|Incarcerated people||Initially excluded by IRS interpretation, but now included by court order|
|People who owe child support||Excluded under CARES, but included in new bill|
Not covered in final law
|Non-US citizens||“Resident aliens” are not included|
|Noncitizens who pay taxes||Not included if spouse is not US citizen|
Noncitizens are currently not qualified for stimulus money, even if they pay taxes
The CARES Act made a Social Security number a requirement for a payment. While earlier proposals would have expanded the eligibility to those with an ITIN instead of a Social Security number because they’re classified as, this group of people is again excluded in the final bill text that authorized a second stimulus check. We’ll have to wait to see how this group is addressed in a third check.
Overdue child support won’t be garnished from your second check, but there are exceptions
If you owed child support, your(the amount you owed). With the second check, those who to cover past-due payments. It’s unlikely we’ll see the third stimulus check walk this back.
However, one exception seems to be for people who are missing payments of any amount and need toin their taxes. The protection from garnishment laid out in the second check doesn’t extend to catch-up payments made in the Recovery Rebate Credit, according to the Taxpayer Advocate Service, an independent government agency that works with the IRS. That means that all or part of stimulus money received this way could potentially be seized to pay outstanding debts — the Taxpayer Advocate Service is urging the IRS to keep rebate credits intact.
People who are imprisoned are eligible to get a stimulus check according to the current law
After months of back and forth, the IRS was ordered by a federal judge to. They are not excluded from the new law, which means eligibility for this group currently stands. It’s unclear if there will be any more details in the third stimulus check bill, though this is more likely to continue as a matter of interpretation, as it is now.
If you’re an older adult or retired, this could affect your payment
Many, received a first stimulus check under the CARES Act and will be eligible for a second one. For older adults and retired people, factors like , , your pension and if you’re part of the (more below) will affect if you receive a second payment.
The third stimulus check could make older adult dependents eligible to receive more money on behalf of the household. Here’s how to determine if you.
Nonfilers still qualify for stimulus checks, but they have to take an additional step
With the second payment, the IRS will use your 2019 tax returns to determine eligibility.in 2018 or 2019, may under the CARES Act. And this group will qualify again. Here are reasons you might not have been required to file:
If you still haven’t received a first or second check even though you were eligible, you can.
People who receive SSI or SSDI are typically qualified for a payment
Those who are part of theunder the CARES Act. Recipients wouldn’t receive their payments via their Direct Express card, which the government typically uses to distribute federal benefits, but through a non-Direct Express bank account or as a . SSDI recipients can file next year to request a payment for themselves and their dependents.
In the, these recipients will again qualify to receive payments, along with Railroad Retirement Board and Veterans Administration beneficiaries.
How your taxes and stimulus payment eligibility are related
For most people,. For example, the most important factor in setting income limits is , which determines how much of the total amount you could receive, be it $600 or $1,200 for individuals and $1,200 or $2,400 for married couples (excluding children for now). The same will hold true with a third stimulus check.
Read more below for your eligibility.
For more information, here are thetoday, everything you need to understand about and .