Second Stimulus Check (Find out if you Qualify)

Are hopes for a second stimulus check dead? Not so fast. Negotiations on a second coronavirus stimulus package, including $1200 checks to the public continue. The question is: how long will it take to get a bill passed and get money to millions of Americans as the COVID-19 pandemic surges?

In this post, we will give you an update on negotiations so far between the White House and House Speaker, Nancy Pelosi.

In addition, we will outline scenarios you can expect based on the outcome of the elections and how soon a bill can pass.

Also, we will detail eligibility requirements we’ve been able to gather about who will qualify for the second stimulus check.

Finally, we will answer the most frequently asked question about the upcoming second round of stimulus payments.

"Will there be a second stimulus check"

What Happened With the First Round of Stimulus Checks?

The IRS was instructed by Congress to make a maximum of $1,200 payments to approximately 159 million Americans.

How much each person got varied depending on income and number of children in the household.

Those earning up to $75,000 or $150,000 for married couples — got the full check.

In addition, partial payments were made to individuals earning up to $99,000 or couples earning $198,000.

Furthermore, parents received an additional $500 for each dependent child.

How Payments were Sent

People who had already given the IRS direct-deposit bank information received the first payments via direct deposit.

Others had to wait to get their payment either via paper checks or debit cards in the mail.

Update on the Second Stimulus Check

Since the economic recovery is slowing down and the COVID-19 pandemic is speeding up, there is broad agreement in both parties for a second round of stimulus payments.

U.S House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin have been negotiating the details of the package over the last few months.

Democrats have been pushing for a $2.2 trillion relief measure.

However, the White House is willing to go as high as $1.9 trillion.

The Proposal by Democrats

House Democrats proposed a similar second round of stimulus checks in the so-called HEROES Act they passed back on May 13.

Individuals will receive $1,200 checks like the first round of stimulus relief.

However, the payment for dependent children was boosted from $500 to $1,200, up to a limit of three.

Therefore, a two-parent family with three kids and income under $150,000 could receive total payments of $6,000.

That breaks down to $2,400 for the parents and $3,600 for the dependent children.

Republican Reactions

Many congressional Republicans have however argued for a “pause” in stimulus efforts until the $2.2 trillion authorized by the CARES Act is fully distributed.

In addition, some congressional Republicans would clearly prefer to avoid a costly second stimulus check.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is proposing a $1 trillion “cap” on any future stimulus bill.

Furthermore, a second “skinny” bill without checks was brought to the Senate floor on October 21 and was defeated by Democrats.

Where does President Trump Stand?

President Trump was initially less enthusiastic about stimulus checks as compared to a payroll tax cut,

However, in mid-September, President Trump reacted favorably to a bipartisan proposal from Congress for a $1.5 trillion package that included the same stimulus check provisions as the CARES Act.

Then the President abruptly terminated the talks with the House in October.

Eventually, Congress went home and time ran out for a pre-election deal.

President Trump has since indicated that a big stimulus package with a second check would happen after he wins and Republicans take over the House.

When will Negotiations Resume on Second Stimulus Check?

It depends on the outcome of the election.

If Trump loses the election, he has no particular incentive to work hard on a deal during a lame-duck session of Congress and no leverage in negotiations.

In addition, Speaker Pelosi has every reason to wait for a new Biden administration in January and move legislation then.

It is possible that the new bill becomes law in the period after the Nov. 3 election and before or after Inauguration Day on Jan. 20.

Possible dates a second stimulus check could go out

Here are some possible scenarios about when you can expect your second stimulus check, compiled by CNET.

First Scenario Second Scenario Third Scenario Fourth Scenario 
House passes final billNov. 30Dec. 11Feb. 1Mar. 1
Senate passes final billDec. 1Dec. 12Feb. 2Mar. 2
President signsDec. 2Dec. 13Feb. 3Mar. 3
First direct deposits issuedWeek of Dec. 21Week of Dec. 28Week of Feb. 8Week of Mar. 8
First paper checks sentWeek of Jan. 4Week of Jan. 11Week of Feb. 15
Week of Mar. 15
First EIP cards sentWeek of Feb. 1Week of Feb. 8Week of Mar. 15
Week of Apr. 12


Who could qualify for a second stimulus check?

If you were eligible for the first stimulus check, you should also be eligible for stimulus check number two.

Here’s what the eligibility guidelines are projected to be based on the first stimulus package.

People who earned $75,000 or less per year according to their most recent tax returns qualified for the entire $1,200 stimulus check.

In addition, married couples, or joint filers, who earn under $150,000 per year were eligible for $2,400.

However, those who earn more, up to $100,000 per year, will get reduced checks.

According to this table below compiled by CNET, here’s a projected list of who could qualify for the second stimulus check:

Qualifying groupLikely to be covered by the final bill
IndividualsAn AGI of less than $99,000 (Same as CARES)
Head of householdAn AGI of less than $146,500 (Same as CARES)
Couple filing jointlyAn AGI less than $198,000 (Same as CARES)
Dependents of any ageNo limit (HEALS proposal; up to 3 in Heroes)
US citizens living abroadYes, same as CARES
Citizens of US territoriesLikely, with payments handled by each territory’s tax authority (CARES)
SSDI and tax nonfilersLikely, but with an extra step to file
Uncertain statusCould be set by court ruling or bill
Incarcerated peopleExcluded under CARES Act through IRS interpretation, judge overturned
Undocumented immigrantsQualifying “alien residents” are currently included under CARES
Disqualified groupUnlikely to be covered by the final bill
Noncitizens who pay taxesProposed in Heroes Act, unlikely to pass in Senate
People who owe child supportIncluded in Heroes proposal, but excluded under CARES

FAQs about Second Stimulus Package

Here are the most frequently asked questions about the second stimulus package.

How soon will checks be distributed?

It is estimated it would take two weeks from the time of approval for the first checks to start being deposited.

After the $2.2 trillion CARES Act was passed at the end of March, some Americans received their stimulus checks as early as the week of April 13.

Here’s an estimate of how the stimulus checks could go out and what you can expect depending on how it’s sent to you.

Direct deposit recipients

Those who already have their direct deposit information on file with the IRS should be first in line to receive a stimulus check.

Social Security, SSI, and SSDI recipients

Just like the first stimulus check, many Social Security and disability beneficiaries received payments in the first week.

That was true for those who had direct deposit information on file with the federal government or had Direct Express debit cards.

People who get paper checks

The IRS began to mail checks about a week later to those without direct deposit information on file.

EIP card recipients

Economic Impact Payment debit cards are prepaid Visa cards the IRS sent to about 4 million people starting in mid-May.

This group could begin to see their checks weeks after the first direct deposit transfers go out.

All Others

If you are still waiting to receive your first stimulus payment, learn about what to do here to get your check.

You may have to wait longer to receive your second check if you have not collected your first check by the time the second payments go out.

Second Stimulus Package Summary

We hope this post on the second stimulus check was helpful.

If you have further questions about Stimulus checks, Social Security, or Disability benefits, please let us know in the comments section below.

Be sure to check out our other articles on Social Security and Direct Express, including Questions about Second Stimulus Check, Social Security Stimulus Check Update, Direct Express Stimulus Check, How to Change Your Address with SSA, and Top Questions and Answers on Direct Express. 

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