The US government recently issued a new batch of $1,400 stimulus checks, pushing the total number of payments to approximately 167 million ($391 billion). This tranche comprised 1.8 million payments worth over $3.5 billion. More than 900,000 people received the checks as direct deposit, while the others received paper checks.
Most of the checks getting issued now are for taxpayers who are due plus-up payments (additional money based on tax returns). These new checks are also being sent to Americans who don’t usually file taxes but did so this time to claim stimulus money. These plus-up payments, exceeding 900,000, amount to over $1.6 billion.
The American Rescue Plan Act, passed by Congress in March 2021, reserved about $410 billion for the third round of checks. Approximately 472 million payments were delivered as first, second, and third rounds of stimulus. According to Tax Foundation economist Erica York, most people eligible for the $1,400 stimulus checks and plus-up payments should receive them automatically. People who still haven’t received these payments are mostly those difficult to reach because they have no income, bank accounts, or the like.
Recently, the IRS issued guidance for homeless individuals, explaining they may still qualify for the stimulus check money and the expanded child tax credit even if they don’t have a permanent address or bank account. Others who don’t file may miss out on the earned income tax credit. Although the IRS is working on finding hard-to-reach populations, they may not get a hold of 100% of those who qualify. The good news is that people can still file their returns to claim the stimulus money. Moreover, you don’t owe the IRS a late-filing penalty if you are due this refund.