Third stimulus check – How much will your family get in Covid relief money?

AS House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and the Democrats race to get Covid relief legislation on Joe Biden’s desk, Americans will be questioning how much their family will receive.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has promised Democrats will try to pass the next coronavirus relief bill before the end of the month; which means a third $1,400 stimulus check could be just weeks away.

Pelosi said the House hopes to green-light the package "as soon as possible" before the March 14 deadline.

According to a MoneyWise report, how much your family receives this time depends on an IRS formula. 

The current proposal would provide $1,400 for each adult in your household and another $1,400 for each dependent – regardless of their age. 

Who will qualify for the next stimulus check?

To determine your eligibility for a stimulus check, the IRS will use your most recent tax return.

The main focus will be on your adjusted gross income, or your taxable income before deductions.

Under the current plan coming together in the House, the $1,400 payment amounts for individuals would be phased out for those whose gross incomes are more than $75,000.

The threshold was $112,500 for heads of household and $150,000 for married couples filing jointly.

House Democrats reportedly considered restricting eligibility for a full payment to individuals earning less than $50,000.

While they had decided against this, the Senate could bring back the idea.

In contrast, Republicans had pushed for lower income limits, to ensure checks only went to the neediest Americans.

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics found that how Americans used last spring’s first, $1,200 stimulus checks varied by income.

Poorer households mostly spent the money on essential needs, such as groceries and rent.

Others used a portion of the cash for investing, saving, or to pay down debt, according to a bureau survey.

More families will get money this time

Under current plans for the third lot of stimulus checks, families who met the relevant income requirements would receive $1,400 for each member of the household, including dependents of age.

This was a markedly different approach from in the previous two rounds, which saw money paid out only to dependents under age 17.

With the very first checks, families received $500 per child; round 2 increased this amount to $600.

The incoming checks will see $7,000 go to a family of five that included two parents and three children, who would have received $3,000 in the recent second go-round.

And families with dependents disqualified in the last two checks would see an even bigger bump.

A family consisting of two parents, a young child and an 18-year-old would receive $5,600 this time, versus just $1,800 in round 2.

If the bill is passed and everything goes according to plan, Biden is set to sign it in March – meaning the IRS could send the checks out just a few days later.

Boost to unemployment benefits

Unemployment benefits will also be included in Biden's stimulus package, as well as providing an emergency boost for families with children.

Unemployment benefits will be boosted to $400 per week.

In an interview with CNN on Tuesday, February 16, Biden defended his proposed spending bill and the next round of $1,400 stimulus checks – saying "now is the time to go big."

"I’m committed to pass – look, here’s – some of you are probably economists or college professors or you’re teaching in school.

“There is consensus among economists, left, right and center, that overwhelming consensus is in order to grow the economy, we can't spend too much," Biden said.

He added, "Now is the time we should be spending. Now is the time to go big."

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