First and foremost, you must have filed your 2018 or 2019 taxes to receive any “free” government money for individuals or couples. The government uses that information to determine your eligibility for the stimulus check and how to send your payment. The IRS uses your past filings to check your income and banking or mailing information. If you did not file taxes and did not receive either payment, you can claim them while filing your 2020 tax return.
However, you will be ineligible to receive an electronic payment, check, or debit card. Instead, you will receive the emergency financial assistance along with the rest of your tax refund. For adult U.S. citizens and resident aliens to be eligible for the full $600 stimulus check, they must:
Not be claimed as someone’s dependent.
Earned less than $75,000 as an individual.
Earned less than $112,500 as the head of household.
Earned less than $150,000 as a married couple.
Parents will earn $600 for each child who was a dependent on their 2018 or 2019 taxes. Dependents only include children younger than 17 years of age, which means parents with 17 and 18 years old will not receive an additional $600 for them. The IRS will not pay parents who are currently pregnant a payment for a not-yet-born child.
During the first round of stimulus payments, married couples filing jointly were ineligible for payment if one spouse did not have a Social Security number. New laws and regulations related to the CARES Act now make those couples and their dependents eligible for payments.
Still have not received your government stimulus check and need help paying bills? You might be able to claim it later.