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How much was the first stimulus check? You may need to know before tax day


You may be required to apply for missing stimulus check money on your tax return. We help you calculate what you owed from the first stimulus check.

Sarah Tew / CNET

Tax season is already on its way, which means it is time to collect your W-2s and 1099 formsAnd you may need this year too IRS Notices 1444 and 1444-B, which verify how much stimulus control money you received with the first and second checks (more on those forms below). The first two coronavirus incentive checks were issued in 2020, and if you received any amount from these payments, you should know how much before filing your 2020 taxes.

Here’s why: If you haven’t received your checks in full (or at all), your 2020 tax return is your chance to file for the Recovery Rebate Credit and recover that missing incentive moneyAnd while It’s possible the IRS will move the filing deadline past the usual April 15th date (thanks to the enormous logistics surrounding the various stimulation packages), there are a number of them really good reasons to apply early this year, if you can.

In the meantime, Congress is smoothing out the details of a new one $ 1.9 Trillion COVID-19 Emergency, which probably includes a third stimulus check that is maximum $ 1,400 per personThe House vote can take place on February 26, at that point we will know more about the package including who is eligible and the amount of payment you can expect to receive. But before going on to check three, it’s important to look back at what you may or may not have received from checks one and two.

How much was the first stimulus check and when was it sent?

The CARES Act was signed into law on March 27, 2020 and the first stimulus check, which was up to $ 1,200 per person (with a additional $ 500 per dependent), would have arrived as early as mid-April 2020, either as a paper check in your mailbox or via direct deposit into your bank account.

If you don’t have IRS Notice 1444 and you know (or think) you received money from the initial direct deposit stimulus check, start by searching your April bank statements. If you still can’t find a receipt, use our first stimulus check calculator below to find out how much you should have received. You can then find what you need to claim your money log into your tax account on the IRS website

What about the amount and dates of the second stimulus check?

Congress passed another bill for emergency economic relief late last year, and the second round of stimulus check payments began as early as December 29, 2020. This payment was limited to $ 600 per person and an additional $ 600 per person. eligible child dependentIf you don’t have IRS Notice 1444-B and can’t find anything in your December and January bank statements, check out our helpful stimulus check 2 calculator to get an idea of ​​what you were entitled to and then go to the IRS website to get what you need.

Stimulus check 1 calculator

Although there is a new set stimulus check qualifications for the third check, we left this calculator here from the first stimulus check for the sake of posterity, in case you wanted to compare estimates or see if you got the amount you thought you would get (if not, here’s how file for a Recovery Rebate Credit with the IRS

Incidentally, the calculator does not store your personal data in any way. Keep in mind that it provides an estimate of the total amount you may have received – it’s not a final figure from the IRS.

Important: Make sure you have your AGI

CNET’s stimulus check calculator tool is based on rules from the CARES Act passed in March 2020. It is intended to give you an estimate of what you should have received on your first stimulus check. To use the tool, you have your adjusted gross income, or AGI, from your 2019 or 2018 tax data. You can find that figure on line 8b of the 2019 1040 tax form and line 7 on the 2018 1040 tax form. (And when you go to file your 2020 tax return, it will be on line 11 of the federal tax form 2020 1040.)

How to Use the $ 1,200 Stimulus Calculator

The CARES Act allowed Americans claim dependent children for $ 500 each, as long as they are 16 years old or under (that is, under 17 years old). Here are exceptions to the current rules regarding when someone is between 17 and 24 years old can claim a stimulus checkIf you typically don’t file a tax return or have other circumstances, this provides more information

Calculate your incentive payment

Use data from your 2018 or 2019 tax return, whichever is the most recent.

1. Choose your filing status below.

Note: If you cannot see the calculator, please click on this linkIf you are on a mobile device, let the calculator load in a new browser tab.

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If you don’t usually file taxes, how to estimate your incentive money

On initial checks, the IRS automatically sent incentive checks to many who normally don’t need to file tax returns – including seniors, Social Security, and SSDI and SSI receivers and railway workers. (In some situations, eligible individuals and families who did not file taxes had to use the IRS Non-Filers tool to provide the IRS with enough information to send a check.) Some who have not filed a tax may qualify for a payment but have not yet claimed it.

If so, enter your best guess where to get your adjusted gross income

Reminder: Here’s who is qualified to receive a first stimulus check

Broadly speaking, here is the income ceiling under the CARES Act:

  • You are a single U.S. citizen or resident alien and have an adjusted gross income of less than $ 99,000
  • You volunteer as the head of a household and earn less than $ 146,500
  • You file a file jointly with no children and earn less than $ 198,000

To know everything about the first payment, see our guide to the first round of checksWe also have an idea for how fast the IRS could send the third round of payments

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