COVID-19 Stimulus Check IRS Deadline: Why October 15 Is a Crucial Date

October 15

Getty Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin.

October 15 marks the last day for you to file your 2019 taxes, if you requested an extension in the spring. If you want to receive a stimulus check and are eligible, you have to file on or before the October 15 deadline.

There are a select few people who will have more time to file taxes, even after the October 15 deadline. Per the IRS, here are those exceptions:

  • “Members of the military and others serving in a combat zone. They typically have 180 days after they leave the combat zone to file returns and pay any taxes due.
  • Taxpayers in federally declared disaster areas who already had valid extensions. For details, see the disaster relief page on IRS.gov.”

Here’s what you need to know:


How to Provide Your Information to the IRS Before the October 15 Deadline

If you still need to file your taxes with the IRS, you can do so in the normal manner that you file your taxes in.

Per the IRS, “Convenient electronic filing options, including IRS Free File, are still available. Taxpayers and tax professionals should continue to use electronic options to support social distancing and speed the processing of tax returns, refunds and payments.”

For Americans with little or no income who are not required to file a tax return, you can use the Non-Filers Tool, which is designed for incomes below $24,400 for couples and $12,200 for individuals. The press release for the IRS reads,

“People can qualify for a payment, even if they don’t work or have no earned income. But low- and moderate-income workers and working families eligible to receive special tax benefits, such as the Earned Income Tax Credit or Child Tax Credit, cannot use this tool. They will need to file a regular return as soon as possible. The IRS will use their tax return information to determine and issue any EIP for which they are eligible.”


What Pelosi, Mnuchin & Others Have Said About the Need for Another Stimulus Package ASAP

Throughout the summer and into the fall, the president has repeatedly indicated his desire to provide the American people with another round of stimulus payments. On Friday, Chief of Staff Mark Meadows told reporters that a stimulus package was still on the president’s mind, even as he went to the hospital to be monitored following his positive COVID diagnosis.

Meadows said, in part, “(The president‘s) first question to me this morning was, ‘How is the economy doing? How are the stimulus talks going on Capitol Hill?’”

As for Mnuchin and Pelosi, they have both repeatedly signaled their optimism about reaching a compromise in the very near future. On Wednesday, September 30, Mnuchin confirmed that the idea of a second round of stimulus checks is a given with any upcoming package. During an interview with Fox Business, he said he’d “reached an agreement” with Democratic leaders on the topic of direct payments.

“If there is a deal there will be direct payments,” he said.

After his meeting with Pelosi September 30, Mnuchin told reporters outside the Capitol that they’d made “a lot of progress over the last few days” and also said, “We still don’t have an agreement, but we have more work to do. And we’re going to see where we end up.”

According to CNBC, Mnuchin said the White House had reached alignment with House Democrats on issues like direct payments, small business loans and airline aid. However, they still don’t align on issues like state and local government aid and liability protections for businesses, the news network reported.

Mnuchin and Pelosi had a second meeting on Thursday. They had a third meeting on Friday, The Times reported.

Members of the House left on Friday afternoon for their scheduled break with orders to be prepared to return to Congress for a potential stimulus package vote and to expect 24 hours notice if that should happen. Per The Times, Pelosi sent a letter to House Democrats outlining the key differences she and Mnuchin were still working through: the dollar amount of spending, the amount of jobless aid, funding amounts for schools and state/local governments, child tax credits and funds for tracing/testing the virus.

In the letter, Pelosi said to her fellow House Democrats, “We’ll find our middle ground — we’re legislators. We’ll get the job done.”

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