Calculate your possible second stimulus check total: $600, $1,200, more? – CNET


You can get an estimate of how many you could get in your second stimulus check with your calculator.

Sarah Tew/CNET

This week, Congress passed a $900 billion relief bill with a second stimulus check for a maximum of $600 per adult and dependent child, but President Donald Trump indicated on Tuesday night that he would not sign the bill into law without increasing the second stimulus check to up to $2,000 per person. As we wait for this twist to work out one way or another — and the worst-case scenario is that the bill completely falls apart — we’ll explain how the IRS would calculate the $600 direct payment, if that were to continue to go through. 

Understanding the upper limit is easy, but there’s a tangle of rules that determine how much stimulus money your household can actually get. For example, $600 is the most an adult who qualifies for the second stimulus check can get. Each child dependent under 17 years old would bring in an additional $600. More people will likely be ineligible for any check at all in this second round of stimulus payments due to hitting a new income limit.

Use this second stimulus check calculator to determine how much you might qualify to get, based on the rules Congress has set out for the $600 payment (here’s the calculator for the first stimulus check). Note that this wouldn’t necessarily reflect the IRS’ final figure supplied and should be used just as an estimate — other factors could determine your final payment amount. This tool will not share or store your personal details. We recently updated this story.

How to estimate your second stimulus check total

Before you can get an estimate of your second check amount (assuming the $600 upper limit), you’ll need your adjusted gross income (AGI) from your 2019 tax information. On your 2019 federal tax return, you can find that figure on line 8b of the 2019 1040 federal tax form. Keep reading for how to estimate your amount if you don’t typically file taxes.

To estimate the amount of the second check, you enter all your child dependents age 16 and younger for $600 apiece. For tax purposes, a single taxpayer claims no dependents, where a head of household is a person who does not file jointly and claims at least one dependent.

Calculate your second stimulus payment

Use details from your 2019 tax return.

1. Choose your filing status below.

SingleMarriedHead of Household

Stimulus check qualifications: The basics you should know

Broadly, here’s who is eligible for money with the second stimulus payment. Payments top out at $600 apiece, and as you reach the upper AGI limit, the amount of your check will decrease. A family of four that qualifies, for example, could receive up to $2,400. For a complete breakdown, check out our stimulus check qualifications guide.

To get the full $600 stimulus per person, either:

  • As an individual without qualifying children, you have an adjusted gross income of up to $75,000 (this completely phases out at $87,000, down from the $99,000 used for the first check).
  • You file as the head of a household (you claim children) and earn under $112,500.
  • You file jointly without children and earn less than $150,000 and no more than $174,000 (down from $198,000 from the first check).
  • Any dependent child under age 17 will count for an additional $600.

Note, if you don’t qualify for a second stimulus check based on 2019 data but you would qualify based on your 2020 financial situation, you will not receive a second check this year. However, you can get that amount as a credit against your 2020 taxes.

If you qualify based on 2019 tax information but will be over the limit in 2020, you will receive a second check and do not need to repay it.

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How will I receive my second stimulus payment?

If the IRS has your banking information on file, either from your federal taxes or from the first stimulus payment, your payment should come directly to your bank via direct deposit. The Treasury Department said as of this summer that about 75% of recipients were paid via direct deposit, 22% by paper check and 3% through a prepaid EIP card.

When could the payments be sent out by the IRS?

Soon. According to Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, “The good news is [direct deposit] is a very, very fast way of getting money into the economy. Let me emphasize: People are going to see this money at the beginning of next week.” 

Starting in the new year, the IRS will send out payments on paper checks and prepaid EIP cards to those for whom it does not have banking information on file. But sending the payments shouldn’t drag on for months, as the first payments did. By Jan. 15, if the IRS has not sent your payment — or sent the wrong amount — you can claim your money when you file your taxes this year.

What to do if you aren’t typically required to file taxes?

As with the first checks, the IRS will automatically send stimulus checks to many who normally aren’t required to file a tax return — including older adults, Social Security and SSDI and SSI recipients, certain veterans and railroad retirees. The IRS refers loosely to this group as nonfilers.

If you fall in one of these categories, enter your best guess in the calculator where it asks for your adjusted gross income.

Who may not qualify for another direct payment?

We have a list of people who may not qualify for a second stimulus check. If you are over the income limit, a nonresident alien or a dependent 17 years of age or older, you won’t qualify for a check. The People’s Policy Project think tank estimates 13.5 million adult dependents will be excluded under the requirements, including 7.3 million students.

For everything to know about the second payment, see what else is in the new stimulus bill, when the IRS could start sending checks and what we know about renewed federal unemployment benefits in the new bill.

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