Americans could start receiving COVID-19 stimulus money from the federal government as early as Thursday (April 9) or Friday, according to reports. The first round of emergency assistance is expected to reach people who have previously provided direct deposit information to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). That first group of payment recipients is estimated to be about 50 million to 60 million people.
The payments are part of the $2 trillion economic stimulus Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, which also includes expanded unemployment coverage and benefits. Most adults will get a “check” for $1,200, although high-income people may get less. Taxpayers may be eligible, in addition, a payment for $500 per child under the CARES Act.
Many Americans are seeing their incomes shrink dramatically or vanish entirely as the COVID-19 pandemic continues. The stimulus money should help people pay for housing, groceries and basic needs.
According to reports, the IRS will send out a second round of checks to Social Security beneficiaries who did not file tax returns in 2018 or 2019 and receive their Social Security benefits via direct deposit. Most Social Security recipients get their benefits through direct deposit, according to the congressional committee’s announcement.
For security reasons, the IRS will mail letters to recipients at their last known address within 15 days after the payment is made. The letter will let people know how the payment was made and what to do if they did not receive it.
The IRS will start mailing paper checks to individuals in late April or early May, report said, with the first checks going out to those with the lowest incomes.
“It is critical that the federal government work in an urgent manner to get these payments to individuals,” said U.S. Rep. Debbie Dingell (D-Mich.), in a prepared statement.