Most of 2020 and 2021 have been hard for many families, and understandably so. Whether it was financial or health trouble, COVID-19 has dealt a blow that will take years to recover from. However, amidst all the gloom, the government sought to tackle it head-on with the help of stimulus checks.
Whether you’re a family or just a lone person, you might be wondering what a stimulus check is and how it can help you out during these difficult times. Keep on reading more about stimulus checks and family eligibility for it below.
What Is It?
A stimulus check is a monetary payment made by the government to residents in the country to fulfill a fiscal objective. It is generally a part of a larger scheme that aims to enhance economic growth and boost consumer demand. They are designed to give immediate relief to the consumers while increasing revenues simultaneously.
While stimulus checks haven’t been that common in the United States, recently, four stimulus checks have been released for American residents and even American citizens living abroad due to the pandemic.
How Can It Help?
Individuals can utilize stimulus checks in any way that they see fit. It can be used to repay their outstanding loans and bills or invest in things they weren’t able to do before.
These checks are also the ideal way to give a breather to people who are having trouble finding jobs or have faced pay cuts in their workplace due to the pandemic. It can give them more room to breathe and look for better opportunities.
A reason why many people are not applying to receive stimulus checks is that they don’t know whether they fall under the eligibility criteria or not. Finding out whether you can get it is based on your average gross income for the year. If you are under any of the following categories, you are eligible to receive stimulus checks:
- If you are a person who earns less than $80,000
- If you are the household head and earn less than $120,000
- If, as a couple, you earn $160,000 or less.
If you fulfill even one of these qualifications, you are eligible for any payment amount through a stimulus check.
Are Dependents Eligible?
If you are the household head or are a part of a family, you might be wondering whether the recent stimulus checks can be attained by your dependents as well. The stimulus can be received by dependents as well, with no cap.
All dependents are eligible to receive $1400 per person provided that their guardian fulfills at least one of the criteria from the eligibility criteria. It has only been implemented after the third stimulus check.
They have to prove this through their past tax records as well. The Child Tax Credit, Child and Dependent Care Credit, and Earned Income Tax Credit specifically target households with children and dependents.
For Citizens and Non-Citizens
If you’re wondering whether you’re eligible for the stimulus relief provided by the government if you’re a non-citizen, the answer is yes. When you pay taxes to the government and earn less than the threshold, you become eligible.
Families with mixed US citizenship can also receive the stimulus check provided that they fulfill the above criteria regarding the gross average salary. Citizens of US territories are also eligible for the stimulus check.
Social security is a requirement for the first stimulus check, but the third stimulus check incorporates those where at least one member in the family has a Social Security number.
Payment of Other Dues
It might be possible that due to payment of other outstanding bills and loans, you might find that your stimulus check is significantly less than what you expected. It is because the loans that you may have are automatically deducted from your check before it even arrives at your door.
However, after the third stimulus check, this provision has been removed, and now people have the option of choosing whether they want their loan auto-debited from their stimulus check. You might want to check the new eligibility rules that have been released after the third stimulus check to ensure that you’re still eligible for it.
Changing Your Life
When facing significant economic hardships, the ideal way to get some relief is to check whether you’re eligible for a stimulus check. It can give you immediate relief and ensure that you have some room to think about your next steps.
Simultaneously it ensures that the economy is on the right track for growth and will keep flourishing despite the obstacle the pandemic has shown itself to be.