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8 ways the new stimulus check could get you way more than a $ 1,400 payment


Maybe more incentive money will come to you. Here are all the ways you can see a bigger third payout.

Sarah Tew / CNET

The third stimulus check can become official as soon as this week, with President Joe Biden on track to complete the $ 1.9 Trillion COVID-19 Emergency into law before March 14. A new incentive check for up to $ 1,400 per person (calculate your total) is a cornerstone of the package and could bring a flood of financial relief to tens of millions of Americans, along with the Child tax credit more unemployment insurance and additional tax benefits(Some Californians could see an additional check for $ 600

For many families, “$ 1,400” is just the starting point for what they could receive thanks to the changes in qualifications – as long as they are within it strict income limits that have become part of the audit. (Here’s how the third check is similar to the previous $ 600 and $ 1,200 checks

And it’s not just the income limits they have changed. WHO qualifies as a dependent can also be different. Below we help you determine how much incentive money you can expect based on the eight factors. However, it is also possible that you is not eligible for an incentive payment at allWe will walk you through some hypothetical situations. This story was recently updated with new information.

1. $ 1400 per dependent means your check total can be multiplied

While dependent persons don’t get their own checks, they do count towards the family total. On the first check, children 16 and under charged $ 500 each, while adults charged up to $ 1,200. The second check was $ 600 payable to children, the same amount as their parents or guardians.

The third stimulus check is set to increase the figure to $ 1,400 each for everyone (adults would still be calculated on a sliding scale based on adjusted gross income, or AGISo in theory a family of four who met all income requirements could receive up to $ 5,600 (calculate your estimate here)

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2. Age no longer plays a role, so in general there may be more dependents

Who counts as a dependentThe next stimulus package would have a different answer. For the first and second checksDependent person means any child aged 16 or under. But the new definition would include anyone you can lay claim to your tax returns – such as children over 16, older adults in your care and dependent children of any age with disabilities. If approved, it can make more money for your family by increasing the number of eligible dependents.

3. Babies and other additions: Did your household get a new dependent in 2020?

If you’ve had or adopted a new child, an older relative moves in with you, or if you’ve become dependent for any other reason since the last round of incentive payments, you may see a larger check. Actually, parents of 2020 babies can get maybe $ 1,100 Lake.

4. Citizenship: If you have a mixed-status family, you may be eligible for an incentive payment

Under the new incentive plan, more families considered “mixed status” qualify for a stimulus check. The second payment broadened the rules from the first check by making it possible for families where a spouse is a US citizen to be eligible for benefits. Biden’s proposal would work with more scenarios: For example, it could potentially generate incentive check money for a household of American children with non-civil parents. It is not clear whether this will continue as part of the final bill.


Have you recently married or had a baby? That could bring in more money in a third stimulus payment – possibly as early as March.

Sarah Tew / CNET

5. Employment: If your status changes, you can get more

If you became unemployed or your wages fell this year, you could lower your adjusted gross income, which is used to determine your payment. For example, if you get a partial payment on the first or second check, a third check can earn you a full payment when you are no longer employed.

6. Marital status: what if you are married and submit an application together for the first time?

Depending on several variables, including your spouse’s application status and any new dependents, a change in marital status can result in greater scrutiny. For example, if you were single and filed alone, you would have received up to $ 1,200 the first time. Married, you have since become eligible for up to $ 2,400 the IRS formula used to determine your total incentive money is based on your combined family income.

If a third stimulus check comes in for $ 1,400 per person, your spouse can double it to $ 2,800. Alternatively, if your AGI staff would you only have one partial stimulus check payment If you are self-filing with a spouse with an income below the threshold, you may be eligible for the entire check total.


With a third check, your incentive money could add up.

Sarah Tew / CNET

7. Custody: Do you share a dependent? It can make a difference

If you meet certain qualifications, you and the other parent of the child both can claim extra incentive moneyThat means you can get an extra $ 500 or more on the third stimulus check, especially if something in your situation has changed between the time you file your 2019 tax return and your future 2020 return. would be based on your most recent tax return

8. Prisoners: a legal interpretation can become permanent

A federal judge ruled that in 2020 the IRS owes incentive checks to eligible prison inmatesIf the ruling is in effect, these people may be entitled to a third stimulus check and the first two, with possibly more money for dependents.

Note on incentive checks and undocumented residents

Democrats have suggested that in the past Undocumented US residents are eligible for incentives money if they pay tax (via an ITIN number). This provision was part of the Heroes Act this passed the House of Representatives in two forms, but did not become law.

At the third check, you must have a Social Security number to be eligible, or you must be part of one mixed family status where a household member has a social security number, if approved. On February 4, the Senate passed an amendment blocking stimulus payments from undocumented immigrants. While the amendment is not binding, it seems unlikely that senators would change their position now that they are known.

Here everything else is you need to be aware of stimulus checks today, including how to claim any missing incentive money on your 2020 tax return and how contact the IRS about your missing payment

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