As most people know, the federal government recently passed the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act, better known as the CARES Act. However, plenty of folks are confused about the details and many of the questions we are receiving right now are about the stimulus (economic impact) payments.  Consequently, we decided to dedicate this blog to the payments. 

Here are some details on the stimulus checks and who qualifies:

  • Stimulus payment is $2,400 for married couples filing a joint return.
  • Stimulus payment is $1,200 for all other filers.
  • Additional $500 stimulus payment for dependents under age 17.
    • No payment for dependents age 17 and older.
  • Stimulus payment is reduced for every $5 earned income is over the threshold limit.
  • Threshold limits:
    • $150,000 for married filing joint.
    • $75,000 for all other filers.
  • The IRS will use your 2019 return to determine the stimulus payment you are to receive. 
  • If you have not filed your 2019 return, the IRS will use your 2018 return to make the determination. 
  • In most cases, you have to file a tax return in order to receive a stimulus payment.
    • If you are receiving Social Security benefits, you do not have to file a tax return to receive the stimulus payment. 
  • The IRS will use your bank account information from your tax return or your Social Security payments to direct deposit your stimulus payment.
    • The IRS is in the process of developing a portal on for US citizens to use to provide their bank account information to the IRS for the stimulus checks.
    • If the IRS does not have your bank account information, they will mail you a check.
  • US citizens living abroad are also eligible for the stimulus checks. 

For more information on the economic impact payments and other coronavirus tax relief, go here: And, as always, if you have further questions about how the Act will affect you financially, we’re here to answer questions and help! Stay safe and healthy, everyone!

Judith Ackland has more than 26 years of experience in accountancy and financial planning, including seventeen years as a CFO of a diverse business. She started Crystal Financial in 2010 to help a wide array of individuals, families, and business owners better understand their finances and how good financial management could help them achieve their goals. Judith has an MA in Professional Accountancy from the University of Nebraska at Lincoln as well as a Certified Public Accountant Certificate and a Certified Financial Planner designation.

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