Home » Economy » Want a bigger stimulus check? Consider filing your tax return early
Want a bigger stimulus check? Consider filing your tax return early
How to invest amid stimulus hopes, upbeat earnings
The MarketGauge Group managing editor Michele Schneider, Kingsview Wealth Management CIO Scott Martin, and Wealth Enhancement Group senior VP Nicole Webb on their outlooks for the market.
WASHINGTON — The size of your next stimulus check might depend on when you file your tax return.
Continue Reading Below
For many Americans, income in 2020 was lower than it was in 2019 because of the pandemic-induced recession. And because the stimulus payments of up to $1,400 per person will have limits based on household income, it matters which year the payments are based on.
So why would it matter when you file your tax return? That's because Congress is likely to tell the IRS to use 2019 or 2020 income — whichever the government has when the payment is made, according to the Senate Finance Committee.
Those who file soon after the Internal Revenue Service starts accepting returns on Feb. 12 will likely have their payments based on 2020 income and family size. Those who wait would have their payments based on 2019 income and family size.
"If it's filed electronically, it's processed almost immediately, and the information is then available to the IRS almost instantaneously," said David Kautter, who was the top tax-policy official at the Treasury Department during the first two rounds of payments.