This information was accurate as of 5/26/20.
Millions of eligible Americans have already received their Economic Impact Payments (EIPs) via direct deposit or paper checks, according to the IRS. Others are still waiting. The payments are part of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act. Here are some answers to questions you may have about EIPs.
Who’s Eligible to Get an EIP?
Eligible taxpayers who filed their 2018 or 2019 returns and chose direct deposit of their refunds automatically receive an Economic Impact Payment. You must be a U.S. citizen or U.S. resident alien and you can’t be claimed as a dependent on someone else’s tax return. In general, you must also have a valid Social Security number and have adjusted gross income (AGI) under a certain threshold.
The IRS also says that automatic payments will go to people receiving Social Security retirement or disability benefits and Railroad Retirement benefits.
How Much are the Payments?
EIPs can be up to $1,200 for individuals, or $2,400 for married couples, plus $500 for each qualifying child.
How Much Income Must I Have to Receive a Payment?
You don’t need to have any income to receive a payment. But for higher income people, the payments phase out. The EIP is reduced by 5% of the amount that your AGI exceeds $75,000 ($112,500 for heads of household or $150,000 for married joint filers), until it’s $0.
The payment for eligible individuals with no qualifying children is reduced to $0 once AGI reaches:
- $198,000 for married joint filers,
- $136,500 for heads of household, and
- $99,000 for all others
Each of these threshold amounts increases by $10,000 for each additional qualifying child. For example, because families with one qualifying child receive an additional $500 Payment, their $1,700 Payment ($2,900 for married joint filers) is reduced to $0 once adjusted gross income reaches:
- $208,000 for married joint filers,
- $146,500 for heads of household,
- $109,000 for all others
How Will I Know if Money Has Been Deposited Into my Bank Account?
The IRS stated that it will send letters to EIP recipients about the payment within 15 days after they’re made. A letter will be sent to a recipient’s last known address and will provide information on how the payment was made and how to report any failure to receive it.
Is There a Way to Check on the Status of a Payment?
The IRS has introduced a new “Get My Payment” web-based tool that will: show taxpayers either their EIP amount and the scheduled delivery date by direct deposit or paper check, or that a payment hasn’t been scheduled. It also allows taxpayers who didn’t use direct deposit on their last-filed return to provide bank account information. In order to use the tool, you must enter information such as your Social Security number and birth date. You can access it here: Get My Payment
I Tried the Tool and I Got the Message “Payment Status Not Available.” Why?
Many people report that they’re getting this message. The IRS states there are many reasons why you may see this. For example, you’re not eligible for a payment or you’re required to file a tax return and haven’t filed yet. In some cases, people are eligible but are still getting this message. Hopefully, the IRS will have it running seamlessly soon.
For More Information
- Social Security Recipients Will Automatically Receive Economic Impact Payments
- IR-2020-59- IRS Unveils New People First Initiative
- IR-2020-61- Economic Impact Payments: What You Need to Know
- IR-2020-64- IRS Issues Warning About Coronavirus-Related Scams
- IR-2020-65- Sign Up for E-News Subscriptions for Urgent Updates on COVID-19
- IR-2020-69- IRS Launch New Tool
- IR-2020-72- IRS Unveil Online Application to Help with Economic Impact Payments
- IR-2020-73- Supplemental Security Income Recipients Will Receive Automatic Economic Impact Payments
- IR-2020-74- Free File Use Soars
- IR-2020-75- Veterans Affairs Recipients Will Receive Automatic EIPs
- IR-2020-76- IRS Asks for Help in the “Plus $500 Push”
- IR-2020-80- IRS Deliver 89.5 Million Economic Impact Payments in First Three Weeks
- IR-2020-81- SSI Recipients with Eligible Children Need to Act by May 5 to Quickly Add Money to Their Automatic EIPs
- IR-2020-82- IRS Enhances Get My Payment Online Application to Help Taxpayers
- IR-2020-83- Use IRS Non-Filers: Enter Payment Info Here Tool to Get Economic Impact Payment
- IR-2020-85- EIPs Continue to be Sent, Check IRS.gov for Answers to Common Questions
- IR-2020-86- SSI Recipients With Eligible Children Need to Act by Tuesday, May 5 to Quickly Add Money to Their Automatic EIP
- IR-2020-91- IRS Release Latest State-by-State Economic Impact Payment Figures
- IR-2020-92- Act by Wednesday for Chance to Get Quicker Economic Impact Payment
- IR-2020-93- Why the Economic Impact Payment Amount Could Be Different Than Anticipated
- IR-2020-96- IRS Expands Partner Materials for EIPs; Continues Sweeping Effort to Share Details in Multiple Languages
- IR-2020-97- IRS Adds Phone Operators to Answer Economic Impact Payment Questions
- Treasury 05.20.20 Release; Treasury is Delivering Millions of EIPs by Prepaid Debit Card
- IR-2020-101- IRS Release Latest State-by-State EIP Figures for May 22, 2020