If you receive Social Security benefits and didn’t already receive a $500 payment for a qualified dependent, then you’re in luck.
Here’s what you need to know.
Stimulus Update: Social Security
While millions of Americans received an Economic Impact Payment through the Cares Act — the $2.2 trillion stimulus package that Congress passed in March — many seniors with dependent children did not receive a $500 dependent payment. Why? Most seniors who receive Social Security, but who didn’t file a 2018 or 2019 federal tax return, should have automatically received a $1,200 stimulus payment. However, if you’re a senior with a dependent child 16-years-old and younger, you had to visit the IRS website and use the Non-Filer tool to receive a dependent payment. Plus, you had use the Non-Filer tool prior to April 22 if you wanted the dependent payment included in your first stimulus check. If you didn’t do this, you likely did not receive a $500 stimulus payment for each dependent child. So, what can you do to get the $500 payment?
How to get the dependent payment
To get the dependent payment, you have two options and must meet at least these requirements:
- You receive Social Security retirement benefits, Supplemental Security Income (SSI), disability (SSDI), survivor benefits, Railroad Retirement benefits or Veterans Affairs Compensation and Pension.
- You did not file a 2018 or 2019 federal income tax return.
- You have at least one dependent who is 16-years-old or younger.
- You have not received a payment of $500 for each dependent.
Option 1: Use the online non-filer tool before September 30, 2020
The first option is to use the Non-Filer tool, which is available on the IRS website for those who did not file income taxes. The IRS will reopen the registration period starting August 15, 2020 through September 30, 2020. Here’s how it works.
- Visit irs.gov and access the free Non-Filers: Enter Payment Info Here tool.
- Enter your information, including for your dependents who are 16-years-old and younger.
- Dependents 17-year-old and older, including high school students or college students, are not eligible for dependent payments.
Option 2: Claim on your next tax return
While you have until September 30, 2020 to enter your information on the IRS website, it’s possible that you may miss the deadline. In this case:
- Claim the $500 dependent credit on your 2020 tax return.
When will the $500 checks be mailed?
The IRS expects to send these $500 dependent payments by mid-October 2020.
How will the checks be sent?
It depends. If you received your first stimulus check through direct deposit, then you should expect the dependent payment to be deposited into your bank account. If you received a paper check, then you should expect the dependent payment to be sent as a paper check.
What if I still plan to file a 2018 or 2019 income tax return?
If you still plan to file a 2018 or 2019 income tax return, then you should not use the Non-Filer tool to provide information about your dependent or dependents.
What if you already entered information about your dependents using the non-filer tool?
If you already used the Non-Filer: Enter Payment Info Here tool, then you do not need to enter your information again. The IRS will automatically send you a dependent stimulus payment.
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