A $2 trillion economic relief plan was passed by Congress and signed by President Trump to offer assistance to tens of millions of American households affected by the coronavirus pandemic.
In it, stimulus payments to individuals are offered, as well as expanded unemployment coverage, student loan changes, different retirement account rules and more, according to an FAQ published by The New York Times, which details responses to common questions being asked about the plan.
The following are the most commonly asked questions about the stimulus bill and what each person should know about it.
How much will each payment be?
Most adults will receive $1,200, although some may get less depending on income and other factors. For each qualifying child age 16 or under, an addition $500 will be added. Only one payment will be issued, but future bills could expand that number.
Single adults with an adjusted income of $75,000 or less will get the full amount.
Married couples with no children earning $150,000 or less will receive a total of $2,400. And taxpayers filing as heads of households will get the full payment if they earned $112,500 or less.
Everyone who gets paid must submit a valid Social Security number in order to be eligible, except for members of the military.
Your gross adjusted income can be found on Line Bb of the 2019 1040 federal tax return.
You can also use a 2019 Social Security statement showing your income to see what an employer reported to the IRS.
Direct deposits will be made by the Internal Revenue Service to your bank account from your 2018 or 2019 returns based on the recent income-tax figures it already has, so most people likely will not have to apply to receive a payment.
What year’s income should be used?
Your 2019 tax return, but 2018’s can be used if you haven’t filed your 2019 return yet.
Who won’t get a payment?
Single people earning $99,000 or married people who have no children and earn $198,000, according to the Times. A family with two children will no longer be eligible for any payments if its income surpassed $218,000.
If someone claims you as a dependent, you won’t get a payment, however, even if you’re an adult.
Also, if your previous tax returns make you ineligible but you’ve lost income in 2020 so far, you won’t be eligible until you file your 2020 taxes. The payment is technically an advance on a tax credit that is available for the entire year.
There are many other provisions in the bill, however. You may be able to file for unemployment or for one of the new loans for small business owners or sole proprietors.
What if your direct deposit information has changed or you want to add it for the first time?
On March 30, the IRS said on its website that it will build a portal where people can update their information in the coming weeks.
When will the payment arrive?
Most people can expect to get their payments by April 17 according to Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, but those using the new portal may not get theirs until a few weeks after submitting their information.
A paper notice will be sent in the mail a few weeks after each payment is disbursed.
Those who receive a payment will not have to pay income tax on it.
What if you haven’t filed tax returns recently?
People who typically do not file a tax return will need to file a simple tax return to receive an economic impact payment, the IRS said on its website on March 30.
Included are low-income taxpayers, veterans and people with disabilities.
Will people receiving social security and disability payments get a stimulus check?
Yes, as will unemployed people and veterans.
U.S. citizens living abroad can also get a payment as long as they meet the income requirements and have a Social Security number.
What is covered by the expanded program?
Far more workers than are usually covered are included, including self-employed people and part-time workers.
How much will each person receive?
Unemployment benefits often replace about 40 to 45 percent of an average worker’s $1,000 a week paycheck. Under the plan, eligible workers will get an extra $600 per week on top of their state benefits.
Some states are more generous than others; for example the maximum weekly benefit is $275 in Alabama and $713 in New Jersey.
Part-time workers are eligible for benefits and the additional $600 weekly benefit.
Anyone who is unable to work because of COVID-19 is covered. Workers from shut-down schools are as well, as are people who can’t start a new job or continue a former job because of quarantines.
If the top earner in your household died because of coronavirus and you depended on them you are also eligible.
Workers who are able to work from home, those receiving paid sick leave or paid family leave are not covered. New entrants to the work force who can’t find jobs are also ineligible.
How long will the payments last?
The federal CARES Act provides all eligible workers with an extra 13 weeks.
Michigan’s system has been overloaded by people seeking benefits, and the state has expanded the amount of weeks from 20 to 26 for the COVID-19 epidemic.
Adding in the additional 13 weeks of federal benefits brings the total to 39 weeks available for Michiganders who have lost their jobs.