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  • Writer's pictureLewis Grunfeld, CPA

Is It Too Late to Claim the COVID Stimulus Checks?

Updated: May 30

If you haven't received your $3,200 in stimulus checks, you can still claim the full amounts by filing your 2020 and 2021 tax returns by May 17th, 2024. This deadline is essential for those seeking to claim missed payments.


A Breakdown of COVID Stimulus Checks

During the COVID-19 pandemic, the U.S. government issued three stimulus checks to eligible Americans. The first payment, in March 2020, consisted of $1,200 for adults and an additional $500 for each dependent. A second payment of $600 for both adults and dependents followed in December 2020. In March 2021, a third payment of $1,400 for each adult and dependent was distributed. These payments were aimed at providing financial support to individuals and families during the economic challenges brought on by the pandemic.


Deadline for Claiming the Stimulus Checks

Time is running out to claim the COVID-19 stimulus checks if you haven't already done so, with the process requiring the filing of tax returns. For those who missed their initial payments or received an incorrect amount, the opportunity to correct this is narrowing. The deadlines to file a return and claim the Recovery Rebate Credit for the 2020 and 2021 stimulus payments essentially boil down to three years from the original due date of the return in which it needs to be claimed: May 17, 2024, for the first check (June 15, 2024, for expats), and April 15, 2025 (June 15, 2025, for expats), for the second and third checks.


Who Was Eligible for the COVID-19 Stimulus Checks?

Eligibility for the COVID-19 stimulus checks was determined by several key factors, directly tied to taxpayers' adjusted gross income (AGI), filing status, and other criteria. Here's a concise breakdown:

  • AGI and Filing Status: Eligibility and the amount of stimulus payment depended on the AGI from your most recent tax returns and your filing status (single, head of household, or married filing jointly). Each status had specific AGI thresholds for full or partial payments. For detailed AGI thresholds, see the accompanying table.

  • Social Security Number Requirement: Recipients needed a valid Social Security number for themselves and any dependents claimed for the additional payment.

  • Exclusions: Certain groups were excluded, such as individuals claimed as dependents on another taxpayer's return, nonresident aliens, and estates or trusts.


Income Eligibility Criteria for the First Stimulus Check

Filing Status

Full Payment AGI

Phased Out AGI

Single

Up to $75,000

Up to $99,000

Head of Household

Up to $112,500

Up to $136,500

Married Filing Jointly

Up to $150,000

Up to $198,000


Income Eligibility Criteria for the Second Stimulus Check

Filing Status

Full Payment AGI

Phased Out AGI

Single

Up to $75,000

Up to $87,000

Head of Household

Up to $112,500

Up to $124,500

Married Filing Jointly

Up to $150,000

Up to $174,000


Income Eligibility Criteria for the Second Stimulus Check

Filing Status

Full Payment AGI

Phased Out AGI

Single

Up to $75,000

Up to $80,000

Head of Household

Up to $112,500

Up to $120,000

Married Filing Jointly

Up to $150,000

Up to $160,000

How Can Expats Catch Up on Tax Returns and Claim Stimulus Checks?

Expats who haven't filed a US tax return can utilize the IRS streamlined procedures to catch up with their tax filings and claim missed stimulus checks. This process allows for the submission of three years of overdue tax returns and six years of FBARs, enabling expats to become compliant without facing harsh penalties. Importantly, it also offers a pathway to recover stimulus payments they were eligible for but did not receive. For expats in this situation, the Streamlined Procedure is not just about rectifying past tax filings; it's an opportunity to access financial support provided during the pandemic, ensuring they don't miss out on entitled benefits.


Need Help With Claiming Your Missing Stimulus Checks?

At CPAs for Expats, we can help you with claiming your missing stimulus checks. Our low fees and 4.9/5 rating on independent review platforms attests to our commitment to excellence and client satisfaction. Contact us today, and let our tax experts simplify your life and taxes.



Article by Lewis Grunfeld, CPA

Lewis Grunfeld, CPA, is a renowned expert in international and U.S. expat taxation, with expertise spanning over ten years. He has successfully helped thousands of expats around the world navigate complex international U.S. tax regulations, and achieve significant tax savings. His work is driven by a strongly rooted passion for assisting the expat community through a wide range of tax situations, ensuring tailored solutions for each unique situation.

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1 comentariu


Vizitator
18 mai

How come people on Medicare or Medicaid are not eligible for the stimulus checks for 2024 ? Medicare doesn't pay our rent , Medicare doesn't pay our light gas or water bills , Medicare doesn't pay for our groceries, Medicare doesn't pay for our car insurance, Medicare doesn't pay for our car gas,? So why is the question are we not eligible for those stimulus checks? The illegal immigrants are getting 5,200$ a month for free, they are getting housing when there are a lot! Of AMERICAN CITIZENS IN NEED OF HOUSING but we have to wait on a waiting list, we need this help now from our government, but the government is giving it out to the illegals for…

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