How Your 2019 Tax Return Affects the Amount of Your Stimulus Check

How Your 2019 Tax Return Affects the Amount of Your Stimulus Check

The U.S. government passed a $2 trillion stimulus plan on Friday, March 27, 2020.  Now the U.S. Government is preparing to send stimulus payments to taxpayers to help them survive the coronavirus pandemic. 

How much you receive may depend on whether you have filed your 2019 income taxes. 

The U.S. government is going to give a rebate of $1,200 per eligible person plus $500 for each child.  For a family of five, that is $3,200.  However, if your income is more than $75,000 (or $150,000 if you are married filing joint return), the amount of the rebate will go down.  To determine how much income you have, the government will look at your 2019 tax return, unless you haven’t filed yet.  As we wrote earlier last week, the deadline to file and pay taxes has been automatically extended to July 15, 2020.  Therefore, if you have not filed your 2019 tax return, the U.S. Government will look at your 2018 tax return.  By analyzing your 2018 and 2019 income, you can decide whether it is better to wait to file your 2019 return until after you get your stimulus check. 

Where will the stimulus check go? What if I didn’t get it?

In addition to mailing a check, the government may directly deposit the money in your bank account, using the account information you gave for receiving tax refunds on your 2018 tax return.  Fifteen days after sending a payment, the government will mail a notice to your last known address giving you a phone number to call at the IRS if you didn’t receive your payment. If you have moved, make sure you update your address with the IRS.

When will I get the money? 

Payments will be made before December 31, 2020.

Click below to read the text of the CARES Act


Jonathan Mishkin

Jonathan D. Mishkin focuses his practice on tax/trust controversy, estate planning, taxation and closely-held business advisory services with offices in Portland, Bend and West Linn. Drawing on deep experience gained inside both large accounting firms and large law firms, Mr. Mishkin capably advises and counsels individuals, families and their businesses, and trusts/trustees.


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