The U.S. Federal Government ushered in the CARES Act in early March this year to combat the economic blow caused by the global shutdown due to the coronavirus pandemic. An economical package at large, the CARES Act encompasses several provisions to help the poor, the middle class, low-income groups and businesses by softening the blow of the economic crisis looming in the country.
Under the Act, citizens could register with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) to receive a stimulus check of up to $1,200 as an individual or $2,400 as a married couple, if eligible.
The CARES Act worth $2 trillion was passed in the Senate to aid the people. Until now, the IRS has disbursed more than $270 billion to people who registered to receive the stimulus payment. More than 160 million stimulus payments have been received by the eligible. The process of disbursing these one-time payments will go on until December 31, 2020.
Old eligibility guidelines to receive stimulus checks
The IRS set up a set of mandatory checkboxes to tick for you to be eligible to receive your stimulus payment, also known as Economic Impact Payment (EIP). The biggest tie-breaker was the guideline which mandated people applying for stimulus checks to be tax-paying citizens who were required to be employed. Pensioners or citizens receiving social security could also apply for the same without any glitch.
The bottom line was that a person has to have an income and ultimately file taxes to receive EIP checks. People who have submitted their income tax returns for 2018 or 2019 are automatically approved to get the payment.
New guidelines- the inclusion of non-filers
Since millions of Americans do not file taxes, there was no clarity on whether they would receive stimulus payments or not.
Until now- the IRS announced that people who did not have an income or belonged to low-income groups may also be eligible for stimulus payments. You could be the one if:
- You earned less than $12,200 as an individual or $24,400 as a couple
- You are homeless
- You have no means of income
- You are disabled
- You do not work at all
- You have not filed a tax return for 2018 or 2019
All of these mean that you are not required to file a tax return. If even one of these points checks out for you, it is highly likely that you may receive up to $1,200 in your mail.
All you have to do is immediately sign up to receive a stimulus check on the IRS website under the ‘Non-Filers’ tool. This particular provision by the IRS is going to help millions of poor Americans who did not know that they were eligible for a supplementary payment such as this. Furthermore, the IRS has also rolled out the Non-Filers tool in Spanish to help thousands of people who do not speak English.
Deadline to register for stimulus checks via Non-Filers tool
The IRS will be sending out stimulus payments in the form of paper checks, Direct Express cards, prepaid debit cards and direct deposits. Almost all stimulus payments will be made by December 31, 2020.
However, to receive the payment under the Non-Filers tool, you need to register yourself on the IRS website latest by October 15, 2020. If you register later than October 15, your claim will be rejected even if you qualify for it.
The IRS is urging people to share this information with as many people they can so the disadvantaged can avail monetary help in a crisis like this. MyTaxFiler is helping scores of people make sense of the economic assistance you can get at this time. Connect with us on C19Grants@mytaxfiler.com for better information.
Published on 6/12/2020.