Stimulus check update: You’ll get your direct payment in one of these ways

President Joe Biden has signed into law the $1.9 trillion stimulus bill, setting into motion the numerous COVID-19 relief programs included in the bill.

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The program that will reach the greatest number of Americans is the direct stimulus payment.

Here is what you need to know about how you will get your payment.

Who is eligible?

You are eligible for the third round of direct payments if:

Your Taxpayer status is:You will get $1,400 per adult and dependent if you make:You will get no payment if your AGI is over:
Single$75,000 and under$80,000
Filing jointly$150,000 and under$160,000
Head of household$112,500 and under$120,000

The income amounts are adjusted gross income (AGI) amounts, or what the IRS considers your income is after adjustments such as student loan interest, or contributions to a 401k account.

How much will the payment be?

The payments will be $1,400 per eligible person and $1,400 per eligible dependent. If the dependent is a child, the cutoff age is 17. The dependent can also be an adult.

Those who fall in that category include college students, elderly relatives and disabled adults.

Click here to see those definitions.

Here are the ways you will receive the payment:

Direct deposit: The IRS will use the direct deposit information you provided from the taxes you’ve filed for 2019 or 2020.

Using the timeline for the past two stimulus payments, if you have given the IRS your direct deposit information, you will be among the first to receive a stimulus payment. If Biden signs the bill on Friday, it is likely the payments would be making their way to bank accounts by next week.

Paper checks: If you did not use direct deposit when you filed an income tax return or did not have to file a return, you likely received the first two stimulus payments via a paper check mailed to your house.

Again, using the example of the last two payments, those getting their payment by paper checks can likely start to see them appear in mailboxes about a week after the direct deposits begin. That would be the fourth week of March.

If you have filed a 2020 return already, you will get your stimulus check by direct deposit if you used direct deposit to pay a tax bill or receive a refund.

EIP card: If you received your first two stimulus payments via an Economic Impact Payment Card (EIP Card), you can expect to get the card loaded with your direct payment about a week after paper checks go out. That would be the first week in April.

The cards must be activated to be used. They are mailed in a plain envelope, so be careful you don’t toss it out with other junk mail.

For other questions on the EIP card, click here.

Recovery Rebate Credit: What if you don’t get a payment by April, or didn’t get one or both of the first two stimulus payments? Here is what you should do if you are eligible for a direct payment and have not received one.

First, according to the IRS, the agency has issued all first and second Economic Impact Payments.

If you did not get the first or second payment, or think you received the wrong amount, or, if after the first weeks of April you did not receive the third payment, you may qualify for the Recovery Rebate Credit.

If you are eligible for the payments, you can get a credit which will get the total missed payment to you but you must file a 2020 tax return to claim it. You must file the return even if you do not normally file a tax return.

You can click here to get a link to a site that will allow you to file a return for free via e-filing and information on the Recovery Rebate Credit. There is a link to a worksheet that will help you determine if you are eligible for the credit.

When can you get the credit? That will be determined by when you file the return. It has been taking around three to six weeks to get refunds from the IRS.

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