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Money Management

Do You Have a Stimulus Check Coming Your Way?

This is important money; make sure you’re getting it.

With the coronavirus stimulus bill officially in the can, the IRS has confirmed that it will be sending out checks to American citizens in the next few weeks. The broad line is that everyone will be receiving $1,200, but it’s a little more nuanced than that.

First of all, if you have a family, you’ll be receiving more money. A mother and a father will receive $1,200 each, and they will receive an additional $500 for every child registered under them. However, the important caveat here is regular income. If your regular income is above $75,000 annually, your stimulus check will be reduced by $5 for every $100 more you make than that. If you make $99,000 annually, then you’re not getting squat, though that number increases for married couples to a range of $150,000 to $198,000.

Secondly, in order to determine your regular income, and by extension what you’re entitled to, the IRS will be using your most recent tax return. If you already filed this year’s, they’ll use that, otherwise they’ll use last year’s. If you weren’t required to file a tax return in the last two years due to circumstances like receiving social security or being a veteran, you can file a “simple” return with the IRS on their website to ensure you receive your check. They just need filing status, dependents, and bank info.

As for how you’ll actually receive the money, if you’ve given the IRS direct deposit information for tax returns and refunds, then they’ll just send it right to your account. If not, you’ll get a paper check in the mail. Incidentally, many banks have apps that allow you to deposit checks by taking pictures of them, in case you don’t want to go to a physical location.

One last thing: word is circulating that people have been receiving calls from the “IRS” (note the quotes), telling them to reveal banking info so they receive their check. This is a scam. The IRS does not call people, ever. If you get a call like this, disregard it, and only follow the directions on the IRS website.

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