Waiting isn’t easy, especially when money is involved. Add the coronavirus pandemic to the mix, and everyone is on pins and needles awaiting their next stimulus check. If you’re anxious about the next stimulus package and confused about what’s going on in government, you’re not alone. The following are eight topics to be aware of if you’re trying to make heads or tails of the government’s stimulus plans.
8. Stimulus Negotiations Are Ongoing
The upcoming few weeks may see some definitive decisions coming from Washington. Negotiations are coming to a head as the election looms over both parties. The Senate may vote to revive the Paycheck Protection Program. Also, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell will lead another vote for a small stimulus bill that doesn’t include money for stimulus checks, something Democrats want to include in the next stimulus package.
On the other hand, Nancy Pelosi wants to finalize the $1.8 trillion stimulus offer from the White House. These two diverse approaches have everyone on the edge of their seat, waiting to see what happens.
7. Most People Weren’t Frivolous with Their Stimulus Money
According to the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, most people who received the stimulus checks either saved their money (36%) or paid down debt (35%). Contrary to what people might believe, most individuals who received stimulus money were responsible with their windfall. When asked what they would do with another check, most people said they would save the money or pay down debt.
6. Your Next Payment May Arrive Faster
There’s something to be said for experience. The IRS learned a few things from the first round of stimulus checks. They’ll be more likely to deliver the money much more efficiently after it’s approved this time around. They’ve honed the process and have the right tools this time around.
5. The IRS May Still Owe You Money
If you’re still tapping your feet waiting for a check from the first round, you’re not alone. According to some estimates, 9 million people are still due checks from the first round of stimulus money. The deadline to hunt down your check is November 21, so hurry and find out if you’re owed some money. If you have dependents, the last round of stimulus money may have passed you over. If so, you can claim the money on next year’s taxes!
4. The Next Round of Checks May Come in Waves
The government may distribute the next batch according to how people choose to receive their money. If you have direct deposit set up with the IRS, you may be receiving the next stimulus checks weeks before others. If you have an economic impact payment (EIP) debit card, the upcoming checks could also reach you earlier. People who opt to receive paper checks may receive their money later than everyone else.
3. You May Qualify for More Money
Although the next stimulus package will most likely follow the same guidelines, the qualifications for amounts may change. For example, the government may modify the definition of a dependent, making the age of the dependent irrelevant.
2. Keep an Eye Out for Confusing Exceptions and Rules
As with most government-related topics, stimulus money explanations can get confusing. For instance, retired people may qualify for a stimulus check, with exceptions. People who receive Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) may require a different process to receive the stimulus.
1. Your Stimulus Money Won’t Be Taxed
The good news is that the stimulus money isn’t taxable income, according to the IRS. Your refund on your 2020 taxes won’t reflect the stimulus money you receive. If the IRS failed to pay you what you’re due in stimulus money, you can claim it on your 2020 federal tax return as credit.
As the government decides what their next step is, the best thing to do is get up-to-date information and determine if you received the correct amount the first time. Getting all your ducks in a row prepares you for the next round of stimulus money when it comes.Related: 8 Tips for Safe Walking During Coronavirus