The Coronavirus, Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act will give Americans a one-time cash benefit based on their adjusted gross income. Whether you are employed full time or part time, a gig worker, unemployed, or retired, you are likely eligible for a stimulus payment. Data from your 2019 tax return will be used to determine how much you will get. If you haven’t filed your taxes yet, the government will use the numbers from your 2018 return.
How Much Will You Receive?
A $1,200 benefit will go to single filers with adjusted gross income of up to $75,000. Married taxpayers who file a joint return will get $2,400 if they have income of up to $150,000. Those who file as head of household — a common filing status for single parents — get $1,200 if they have income up to $112,500. Use this stimulus calculator to estimate your benefit.
Haven’t Filed Your 2019 Return Yet?
You may be wondering whether you should file your 2019 tax return if you have not already done so. The answer is: maybe.
If you think you’re going to owe money, you may want to wait to file. When it comes to the stimulus check, the lower your income, the higher your benefit. That means you have an opportunity to compare the two tax returns to see which one would yield a larger stimulus check. I it turns out that you owe money and the 2019 return would yield a smaller stimulus, you can simply hold off on filing the return.
You’ll have to file the 2019 return by July 15, 2020, don’t put it off too long. If you haven’t filed either a 2018 or 2019 return, you should file them as soon as possible. According to the IRS, if you didn’t file in either year, your stimulus check could be delayed.