The stimulus money promised under the American Rescue Plan began to hit the bank accounts of many Americans on Wednesday — the first official payment date — though some financial institutions chose to make the cash available to people even before it arrived from the government.
The Treasury Department said on Wednesday that 90 million payments, totaling more than $242 billion, had already been disbursed. The majority of the payments were made by direct deposit, but Treasury had also mailed about 150,000 paper checks worth about $442 million.
Additional rounds of payments will be made in the coming weeks, including for people who will receive theirs by mail as a check or debit card. You can check the status of your payment with the Internal Revenue Service’s Get My Payment tool.
Payments top out at $1,400 per person, including children and adult dependents. To qualify for the full $1,400, a single person must have an adjusted gross income of $75,000 or below. For heads of household, adjusted gross income must be $112,500 or less, and for married couples filing jointly, that number has to be $150,000 or below. Partial payments are available to people who earn more, but the amounts fall quickly.
The payments are calculated using the most recent information on file with the I.R.S., which could be your 2019 tax return if you haven’t yet filed for 2020.
If you’re newly eligible for a payment based on your 2020 income but haven’t yet filed your return, the law allows the Treasury Department to continue payments until September. If you don’t get one during that period, you can claim what you’re owed when you file your 2021 taxes.