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CARES Act Benefits: Economic Impact Payments

Last updated 8/21/20

CARES Act Benefits

The CARES Act, passed by Congress in the wake of the coronavirus and its economic impact, authorizes payments (known as “Economic Impact Payments” or “Stimulus Checks”) to households of up to $1,200 per adult for individuals whose income was less than $99,000, as well as $500 per child under 17 years old. The maximum benefit for a family of four is $3,400. 

These payments will be made by the IRS using information from your 2018 or 2019 tax return. 

  • If you have already filed taxes for either of these years, you can check on the status of your payment through this website.  
  • If you have NOT filed taxes, the United States Treasury has launched the “Non-Filers: Enter Payment Info Here” section of its website for individuals to provide their information to the IRS online, which can be accessed here. The website will ask you to provide the following information:  
    • Full name, current mailing address and an email address 
    • Date of birth and valid Social Security number 
    • Bank account number, type and routing number, if you have one 
    • Identity Protection Personal Identification Number (IP PIN) you received from the IRS earlier this year, if you have one 
    • Driver’s license or state-issued ID, if you have one 
    • For each qualifying child: name, Social Security number or Adoption Taxpayer Identification Number and their relationship to you or your spouse 
  • If you began receiving Social Security Disability (SSDI), Social Security retirement benefits, Social Security survivors benefits, Railroad Retirement (RR) benefits, or Veterans Affairs (VA) benefits before 2020, information from your benefits statement will be used to generate your payment if you did not file tax returns for 2018 or 2019. You do not need to submit additional documentation. You should receive these payments in the same form as your usual monthly payments. However, if you began receiving SSDI, Social Security retirement, survivors, RR, or VA benefits during 2020 and did not file tax returns for 2018 or 2019, you must complete the IRS Non-Filers form by November 21st, 2020, in order to receive an Economic Impact Payment during 2020. If you miss the November 21st deadline, you will need to wait until next year and claim the payment as a credit on your 2020 tax return.
  • If you began receiving Supplemental Security Income (SSI) before 2020 and have no qualifying children, you do not need to take action to receive the $1,200 Economic Impact Payment. The payments will be issued to you automatically using the same means as your monthly payments (e.g., direct express or bank deposit, or paper check). However, if you began receiving SSI during 2020 and did not file tax returns for 2018 or 2019, you must complete the IRS Non-Filers form by November 21st, 2020, in order to receive an Economic Impact Payment during 2020. If you miss the November 21st deadline, you will need to wait until next year and claim the payment as a credit on your 2020 tax return.
  • If you receive SSI, Social Security Disability (SSDI), Social Security retirement benefits, Social Security survivors benefits, Railroad Retirement (RR) benefits, or Veterans Affairs (VA) benefits and have not used the IRS Non-Filers form to provide information about your qualifying child in order to receive the additional $500 per child payment, you must register online by September 30th using the IRS Non-Filers form. If you miss the September 30th deadline, you will need to wait until next year and claim the payment as a credit on your 2020 tax return.

The following organizations can provide additional assistance, including help filing the IRS Non-Filers form: 

  • The Legal Aid Society (888-663-6880, Monday through Friday from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m.) can assist you with filing the IRS Non-Filers form if you have access to a smart device or computer and are able to complete the application with telephone support from Legal Aid. 
  • MFJ Legal Services (212-417-3791) can file the IRS Non-Filers form for you if you do not have access to a smart device or computer. 
  • Coalition for the Homeless’ Crisis Intervention Program (212-776-2177) can assist you with filing the IRS Non-Filers form if you have access to a smart device or computer and are able to complete the application with telephone support from the Coalition.