Stimulus Check 2: Why You May Not Qualify

COVID-19 stimulus checks

Getty Will there be a second stimulus check? Here's what you should know.

As coronavirus cases across the nation continue to rise, Americans are hoping for a stimulus package to provide some form of economic relief. Is a second stimulus check on the horizon, and are you likely to receive one?

While Congress has not come to an agreement on the parameters of a second stimulus package, a check will of $1,200 will likely be in the final legislation; and President-elect Joe Biden has included another round of checks in his stimulus plans.

Thus, while it’s too early to say who will receive a stimulus check and the amount of aid eligible individuals will receive, we do know– based on the stimulus payments sent under the CARES Act and the proposals for a new bill, such as the HEROES Act– who will likely receive a second check. It should be highlighted that a second stimulus package needs to gain bipartisan support and be signed by the incoming president in order to become law.

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GettyAn image of the economic impact payments sent out to Americans April 29, 2020.

CBS News writes, “It’s likely that another stimulus bill will pass, analysts say, but the unknowns include its size and timing.” It adds that people should not count on seeing another stimulus check in their accounts until 2021.

And while some details of a new stimulus package may differ from the CARES Act, like yearly income and how much people will receive for child support, here is what we know so far:

Who Will Receive a Stimulus Check?

Under the CARES Act, cash payments of $1,200 were distributed to individuals, and $2,400 checks were sent to married people, up to certain income limits.

According to CBS News, “Another boost of $1,200 per adult would certainly help alleviate financial stress, yet that one-time payment would only go so far — a month’s rent, for instance, or help with groceries and other bills. As with the initial round of checks, they would be distributed to everyone earning less than $75,000 per single taxpayer or $150,000 per married couple, regardless of whether they lost work or income.”

As CNET points out, an individual’s AGI (adjusted gross income) is the amount of money they earn in one year minus approved deductions. AGI is what the IRS used to determine who qualified for a stimulus check under the CARES Act– individuals who earned up to $99,000 qualified for a stimulus payment.

CNET states that if you make between $75,000 and $95,000 you would get a portion of the check, given the rules don’t change.

The outlet notes that married couples who file jointly and make over $198,000 are likely not eligible for a second stimulus check. “To get the full payment of $2,400, your joint AGI would need to be less than $150,000. The amount you could receive will decrease if your AGI is between $150,000 and $198,000.”

There is also a discussion of what constitutes a dependent. Under the CARES Act, dependents were considered kids age 16 and younger. It’s possible that under a new package, the definition of a dependent could change– so, parents with children older than 16 may receive more money from a relief package.

And while the CARES Act required that individuals have a Social Security number to receive a payment, it’s possible that definition could change to only require an ITIN instead of a Social Security Number.

For a recap of everything that’s currently being debated when it comes to a second stimulus check, click here. 

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