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Elder Services Info on Third Round of Economic Stimulus Payments

From National Center on Law and Elder Rights Submitted by Terrance Manuelito, Elder Services Director


Following enactment of the American Rescue Plan Act on March 11, the IRS moved quickly to start delivering the third round of Economic Impact Payments (EIPs). The IRS began sending out payments by direct deposit on March 12. Additional batches of payments will be sent in the coming weeks by direct deposit and through the mail as a check or debit card.

Who is Eligible

Individuals with adjusted gross incomes up to $75,000 ($112,500 for Head-of-Household and $150,000 for married couples filing jointly) are eligible for the full stimulus payment in the amount of $1,400 each and $1,400 for each dependent, including adult dependents, for the first time. The amount of the stimulus payment phases out to zero for individuals making $80,000 or more ($120,000 for Head-of-Household filers, $160,000 for married couples). The upper limits for eligibility for the stimulus payments are lower than prior rounds of stimulus payments.

Individuals with valid Social Security numbers, including U.S. citizens and lawfully present children and spouses in mixed-status families, are eligible to receive the third payment. Individuals who live in skilled nursing facilities, assisted living facilities, prisons, and other institutional settings are also eligible to receive the payments. Individuals who file taxes using an Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN) or are undocumented immigrants remain ineligible for the payments.

Form of Payment

The IRS will issue the third round of payments based on 2020 tax returns if filed, and if not filed, 2019 tax returns, as well as information provided by individuals through the online non-filer portal used for earlier rounds of stimulus payments. The form of payment for the third EIP may be different than earlier stimulus payments sent by the IRS in 2020 or early 2021.

Recipients of Social Security (retirement, survivors, and disability benefits), Supplemental Security Income (SSI), railroad retirees, and those receiving Veterans benefits will begin to receive their payments automatically on April 3rd, with the majority of the payments to be sent electronically on April 7th. If an individual receives their benefits on a Direct Express card, they should get their third payment directly on their Direct Express card, unlike the earlier rounds of payments.

· Those who did not receive the first or second stimulus payment, but are eligible, can still claim the payment by filing a 2020 tax return. The IRS has extended the deadline for filing a federal 2020 tax return until May 17, 2021.

· Those with no taxable income who have not filed a tax return, or who are not going to receive a payment automatically because they receive one of the types of benefits listed above will need to submit their information to the IRS to receive the third payment. We do not yet have details about how they will be able to submit their information.

Stimulus payments do not affect eligibility for federal means-tested programs like Medicaid, SSI, and SNAP. Because these payments are treated like tax refunds, they are not counted as income and they are not counted as resources for a period of 12 months from receipt.

Additional NCLER Resources:

· Nursing Home Residents, Medicaid, and Stimulus Checks: What You Need to Know

· Medicaid Home and Community-Based Services (HCBS) and Stimulus Checks: What You Need to Know

· Stimulus Payments and Representative Payees: What You Need to Know

· Frequently Asked Questions: Economic Impact Payments

· Supplemental Security Income Basics