This second round uses similar criteria to determine which dependents are eligible. That means that only children aged 16 and under who are listed on a 2019 tax return are eligible. But this time, each eligible dependent child will receive a payment worth $100 more than the first round. Dependents of adult age are not eligible for an incentive check if they are claimed as dependents in the 2019 tax return.
If you earned significantly less in 2020 than you did on your 2019 tax return, you may qualify for a refundable tax credit for this second round for the amount you should have received for your second payment when filing your 2020 tax return.
There is also a change that could allow some people who were not eligible for a stimulus payment last spring to qualify for a stimulus payment in the second round. To get a payment the first time, you had to have a social security number. But this made some households ineligible if, for example, couples filed for taxes jointly, but one of the spouses didn’t have a Social Security number. This time, a spouse with a Social Security number who applies together can get a $600 payment even if the other spouse doesn’t have a Social Security number. A child with a Social Security number is eligible for the $600, even if a parent doesn’t have a number.
Do I need to file a 2019 tax return to get this incentive payment?
Last spring, one of the big questions was what to do for people who didn’t file a 2019 tax return to get their incentive benefits, especially people for whom Social Security benefits were their primary source of income. Now that the government has already gone through the payment process once, things may run a little more smoothly.
If you did file a 2019 tax return, the Treasury Department has all the information it needs to determine your eligibility for a stimulus payment. But if you didn’t file a return last year, there are still several ways the government can automatically send the payment to you. If you used the no-filer portal that the government set up on IRS.gov last spring for the first round of economic impact payments, you should get this second payment without taking any additional steps.
What about Social Security recipients and other federal beneficiaries?
You also don’t need to take any additional steps to receive the second stimulus payment if you already receive federal benefits through one of these programs:
- Social security Old-age pension, survivor’s or disability insurance
- Supplemental Security Income (SSI)
- Beneficiaries of the railway pension scheme
- Veterans Affairs (VA) Benefits
AARP played a big part last spring in getting the government to automatically issue incentive payments to recipients of Social Security, SSDI, SSI, VA, and other federally administered benefits.
When will I receive my stimulus payment?
Last spring, most people who filed 2019 tax returns eligibility for a stimulus check received their money within weeks of the law being passed, either by deposit or by mail. For many others, however, it took months for the government to figure out how to get people who didn’t file taxes to make their payments.
There is reason to believe there will be fewer – and shorter – delays this time. In most cases, the government will be able to reuse the payment information already collected. On December 29, the IRS and the Treasury Department announced that the first batch of direct deposits for these payments were issued that day and that the paper checks would be mailed out on December 30.
While the Treasury Department will generally send a paper check to people who do not receive payment via direct deposit, in some cases the agency may send a debit card instead of a check. Some people who received a paper check in the first round of payment may get a debit card this time and vice versa. If you receive a debit card, the Visa name will be on the front of the card and the issuing bank, MetaBank®, NA on the back.