I’m proud of how the Democrats fought to make sure that Americans across the board would get immediate help from the latest stimulus bill which Trump signed on Friday.
But there was a lot of information leading up to the passage of the bill about what exactly that stimulus check would look like, and I thought it’d be good to confirm what actually made it into the final legislation. Here are the answers to questions I’ve been seeing:
How much will I receive?
Most households will receive some level of direct cash from the federal government — most estimates I’ve seen say it’ll roughly be 90% of households. The amount of money you will get will be based on your 2018 or 2019 tax return, whichever one you submitted most recently. If you haven’t yet filed one of those tax returns, do it right away.
CNN has a simple calculator you can use to determine the amount you’ll be getting: Stimulus Check Calculator
You don’t have to do anything to receive your check. It’ll arrive automatically.
For more details on the stimulus bill, check out How the coronavirus stimulus bill helps you.
When will I get my check?
I’ve seen estimates that it could take just a couple of weeks, but other estimates that say that for some, it may take a few months. There’s a great explainer at CNBC that goes through some of the issues that could delay your check: Coronavirus stimulus paychecks are on their way. But there may be kinks for some Americans
What if I’m retired?
If you are retired, and didn’t file a tax return for 2018 or 2019, you may still qualify for a stimulus check. The IRS will use your Social Security benefit statement to determine the size of your payment. (Source)
UPDATE: The Trump Administration initially said seniors on Social Security must file a tax return to receive a check, but later flipped on that after being pressured by Democrats.
What if I’m a college student?
If you are in college but are still considered a dependent, you will not get a stimulus check. If you lose your federal Work Study job, you could be eligible to receive paychecks for up to one year. I encourage you to read this helpful article from Forbes that runs through the various considerations for college students: Answers To Questions About College Students And Coronavirus Financial Relief
Is anyone ineligible to receive a check?
Yes. Any American who is overdue on child support will either see their cash payment reduced or eliminated. (Source)
I still have questions. What’s a good resource for me?
I encourage you to reach out to your U.S. Representative’s office for any additional questions. Instead of calling their Washington DC number, you’ll get through a lot faster if you call one of their state offices. Find those numbers here: Contacting Congress