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Home / Tips and Tricks / Incentive Check Formula: New details about $ 1,400 checks are emerging that change everything

Incentive Check Formula: New details about $ 1,400 checks are emerging that change everything


The formula of the stimulus check can change, as can the amount you receive with a third payment.

Sarah Tew / CNET

How much money could you get in one third stimulus check for your household – be it $ 1,400, $ 2,800, or $ 10 – depends on a formula the IRS will use calculate your share based on the last incentive bill that Congress is trying to succeed.

The final proposal (pdf) on the table would deliver adults in a household a third stimulus check of maximum Up to $ 1,400 eachIt could also be a additional $ 1,400 for dependents of any age — a potentially enormous sum compared to the previous two controls. For example, a family of four could potentially get $ 5,600, versus up to $ 2,400 provided by the $ 600 check

Determine the final comparison how much money your household could get into a third check, however, is still up in the air and could potentially collapse hard income limits that would exclude some people receiving stimulus money the first two times. Others would have a much larger payment, a much smaller payment or not at allWe’ll explain more below. Meanwhile, here are the The Most Important Things To Know About Incentive Payments right now, including what’s happening as a third check comes in the middle of tax seasonThis story is regularly updated with new information.

How the stimulus control formula determines how much money you get

Before we explain how the third stimulus check could change the equation and what the outcome would mean for you, here’s how it works. You can qualify for a stimulus check if you have a non-applicant who does not pay taxBut in general, your tax return is one of the most important factors in determining your stimulus check total. The others include your adjusted gross income, or AGI, and the stimulus control formula.

The main variables that are plugged into the stimulus formula are:

  • Your AGI you do you 2019 or 2020 federal tax returns
  • Upper limits for single taxpayers, heads of household (for example, a single person with at least one child) and married couples filing jointly.
  • Number eligible dependents you claim.
  • “Reduction” or “Phaseout” – the amount that your total would decrease for every $ 1,000 you earn above the limit to qualify for the full check. In other words, this part of the equation calculates a partial payment if you don’t get everything.

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Stimulus Check # 3: What You Need to Know


Just how the third stimulus could change the equation

The recent proposal to “target” the $ 1,400 incentive check would prevent top earners from receiving a partial payment. If the proposal is passed, the qualifications will be:

  • The full amount of $ 1,400 if you earn below $ 75,000 (single taxpayer); $ 112,500 (householder); $ 150,000 (married)
  • Disqualified for $ 100,000 (Single); $ 150,000 (householder); $ 200,000 (married)
  • The phase-out percentage has been increased to maintain this upper limit
  • These high earners wouldn’t receive partial checks, even if they are dependents

This big change in dependent rules is important

With the previous two stimulus checks, it was possible to get a partial benefit even if you exceeded the maximum income limit – if you had dependents. For example, let’s say a married couple has a AGI of $ 200,000 claims two dependents. With a $ 1,400 stimulus check using the previous formula, that family can still get a $ 600 check.

That’s because the previous formula starts with the largest amount you would qualify for (for example, $ 1,400 per single taxpayer or $ 2,800 for joint filers), adding $ 1,400 for each eligible dependent. Then it lowers the total possible amount according to your AGI and the reduction percentage.

It’s a bit like starting a test with a perfect score of 100 points and subtracting every point you “miss”, instead of starting with zero points and adding them all up at the end of the test.

    coin measuring spoons

Measuring your stimulus check payment is not an easy task.

Angela Lang / CNET

But in this case, the dependents you mention can start you with a higher value, say 110 points in our class example. So by the time you subtract ‘points’, you can still get more than people who don’t have dependents – even if your AGI is above the maximum limit. The more dependent children you have, the higher your starting value and the higher your ending value.

The proposal to target stimulation checks would trigger a solid cut-off, meaning it would start evaluating your AGI. If you exceed the limit, it doesn’t matter how many family members you have. You still don’t qualify for a check.

On the other hand, a family with a large number of dependents and an AGI within the limits can still potentially receive a large partial payment, as long as they fall below that absolute upper limit. You can experiment with our stimulus calculator

Phasing out and reduction rates: what you need to know

A sliding scale is involved in this. For example, during the second check whether you AGI was less than $ 75,000 as a single taxpayer (that means there are no children) you would receive the whole amount stimulus check total $ 600If you made more than that, the size of your check would decrease to $ 87,000, after which you would no longer be eligible.

For the $ 1,400 stimulus check – note that this is subject to change – you can receive the full $ 1,400 if you earn less than $ 75,000 per year (your AGI as the sole taxpayer), with a decreasing return to a close of $ 100,000. You would receive a partial check for an AGI between $ 75,000 and $ 99,900. Again, you can see the differences in our $ 1,400 stimulus check calculators

For heads of household and married couples with dependents, these other members of the household are an important part of the equation – up to a point (see above).

To learn more, here are the top things to do know about stimulus controlsAnd watch how SSDI Recipients and Checks older adults and retirees and people who are not US citizens or Americans who do not live in the US may also qualify, including families with citizenship of mixed status

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