Information on the Stimulus Checks

Congress recently passed a $2 trillion stimulus package that has been signed by President Donald Trump. In addition to loans and grants to businesses, an expansion of unemployment benefits and student loan relief, the law includes direct cash payments to taxpayers.

Individuals with an adjusted gross income up to $75,000 a year are eligible to receive a $1,200 payment. The payment is reduced for those with an AGI above $75,000 and is phased out entirely at an AGI up to $99,000.

Married couple filing jointly with AGIs up to $150,000 a year are eligible to receive a $2,400 payment. The payment is reduced for those with AGIs above $150,000 and is phased out entirely at AGIs of $198,000.

The bill will also allow Americans receiving Social Security to obtain direct financial assistance through the Coronavirus stimulus package. In such cases, the Government would access their data through the Social Security Administration to determine their rebate.

The way you will receive the payment will be from your 2019 return, the IRS will deposit your payment into your bank account automatically. If you haven’t filed your 2019 return yet, the IRS will use information from your 2018 return. If you didn’t give the IRS your bank information, they will mail you a check. This is not a loan and you will not have to pay it back.

It is important to be aware of potential scams.

If someone claims to be from the Government with a check for you, it may be a phishing scam that is illegally trying to obtain your bank account or other personal information. Do not pay anyone who promises that they can expedite a payment or a loan for you. If you are eligible for the relief, you will not need to make any up-front payment or pay any fee to receive a stimulus payment.  

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Sean Hammond is the host of "Sean at Dawn Monday thru Friday from 5:00 to 9:00 am and a contributor to lakercountry.com.