Parents know that kids are costly. That fiscal fact is especially notable when mom and dad have been laid off during the coronavirus crisis.
That's why the Internal Revenue Service is making what it's dubbed the Plus $500 Push. It's an effort to ensure that everyone who's eligible for a COVID-19 economic relief payment gets all the money for which they qualify.
That's $1,200 per person (double that for married filing jointly couples) plus $500 for each qualifying child. That added amount per child is the focus of this new IRS coronavirus payment effort.
Specifically, the IRS is reaching out to folks who don't have to file tax returns and who have dependent children.
Relief for nonfilers with kids: In many of these nonfiler situations, the IRS is working with Social Security Administration (SSA), the Railroad Retirement Board (RRB) and Veterans Affairs (VA) to ensure that folks receiving benefits from these agencies automatically get their $1,200 COVID-19 stimulus money.
That means they don’t have to do anything but wait for the money to show up the same way their benefits do, which generally is a direct deposit.
But there's no way for the IRS to know if these government benefits recipients also are caring for dependent children. So the IRS can't send them the extra $500 now. They'll have to wait until next year and file a return to claim the added money.
To remedy that and get the maximum COVID-19 relief payment to these folks ASAP, the IRS wants them to let the tax agency know about their dependent children.
Deadline for immediate payments: But they need to do so soon. Like by noon Eastern Daylight Time tomorrow if you're a Social Security or Railroad Retirement beneficiary who has kids and haven't had to file a tax returns for the last two years.
If you're among this group, head now to the IRS' new nonfiler online tool. The first page provides an overview of what to expect when you use it. You also can check out my earlier post on how the online option helps nonfilers apply for COVID-19 economic relief payments.
The rush is because the IRS is sending out coronavirus related payments to these benefit recipients first. Like within the coming weeks.
Other nonfilers' data needed later: If, however, you’re the caregiver for a dependent child who's received Supplemental Security Income (SSI) or veterans' benefits and didn't have to file a return for 2018 or 2019, take a breath. You have a bit more time to get your youngster's info to the IRS.
COVID-19 cash is scheduled to go automatically be sent to SSI recipients in early May.
The coronavirus payment schedule for VA beneficiaries of Compensation and Pension (C&P) payments is still being determined.
The IRS will announce the deadlines by which it needs these folks' dependent child data later.
However, you might want to go ahead and get that info in before then. I'd suggest, though, that you wait until Thursday or Friday, letting the general Social Security and Railroad Retirement folks have first crack at the online tool.
No kids, no COVID money worries: Again, if you are a SSA, SSI, RRB and VA recipient and don't have kids, don't worry about logging on to the nonfilers' tool.
Treasury and the IRS say you don't have to do a thing. They'll automatically send you your $1,200 payment.
And your COVID-19 amount will arrive via the same way you get your regular benefits, either direct deposit, Direct Express debit card or by mailed paper check.
You also might find these items of interest:
- Coronavirus 'Get My Payment' tracking troubles
- No bank account? Prepare to wait for COVID-19 cash
- E COVID-19 tax delays give EITC filers have more time to answer claim questions
|Coronavirus Caveat & More Information
In 2020, we're all dealing with extraordinary circumstances,
both in our daily lives and when it comes to our taxes.
The COVID-19 pandemic and efforts to reduce its transmission
and protect ourselves and our families means that,
for the most part, we're focusing on just getting through these trying days.
But life as we knew it before the coronavirus will return,
along with our mundane tax matters.
Here's hoping that happens soon!
In the meantime, you can find more on the virus and its effects on our taxes
by clicking Coronavirus (COVID-19) and Taxes.