SEVERE WX : Winter Weather Advisory View Alerts
STREAMING NOW: Watch Now

12 million low-income people could miss out on stimulus payments

There are about 12 million low-income people who are at risk of missing out on the federal government's...

Posted: Jun 15, 2020 12:44 PM
Updated: Jun 16, 2020 6:30 PM

There are about 12 million low-income people who are at risk of missing out on the federal government's stimulus payment program because they don't have to file taxes, according to an estimate from the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities.

Most people have received the payment automatically, but many who aren't normally required to file taxes must submit information to the Internal Revenue Service by October 15 in order to receive the cash.

By law, individuals don't have to file if they earn less than $12,200. The threshold is doubled for married couples. Since they aren't in the IRS system, they must file a basic form using an online 'non-filer' tool that the agency created for the stimulus program. It asks for names, dates of birth, Social Security numbers, addresses or bank account numbers so that the government can send them the money.

More than 4 million people have used the non-filer tool to get payments so far, according to the House Ways and Means Committee.

But it could be hard and costly to reach eligible payment recipients who still haven't filed -- and for them to submit the necessary information even once they are contacted, since that requires an internet connection.

The Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, a think tank, is calling on states and counties to help notify people that they may be eligible for the money. It estimates that about 9 million non-filers receive Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) or Medicaid benefits, which means that states or local agencies have their information on file.

Other non-filers, like those who receive Social Security, Railroad Retirement, Supplemental Security Income or veterans' pension benefits were not required to submit an online form. The IRS used information on record at other government agencies to automatically send them the money.

Congress created the program in late March as part of its $2 trillion coronavirus aid package and the IRS started sending out the first payments in mid-April.

On June 3, the IRS said it had sent money to all eligible Americans for whom it had the necessary information, totaling 159 million payments worth $267 billion. Most were directly deposited into people's bank accounts, but about 35 million people were sent paper checks and another 4 million were sent pre-paid debit cards in the mail.

But the Ways and Means Committee has estimated that there are about 30 to 35 million payments that still need to be made.

There are several reasons some people could still be waiting. Anyone required to file a tax return in 2018 or 2019 must do so before they are sent the stimulus money. Those who filed a paper return this year may see delays because the agency stopped opening a lot of its mail when it ordered employees to work from home during the pandemic.

Eligibility for the payments is largely based on income, and it excludes individuals earning more than $99,000, head of household filers with one child who earn more than $136,500, and married couples without children earning more than $198,000.

Families earning a little more may still be eligible if they have children. The phase-out limit depends on how many children they have. For a typical family of four, the amount is completely phased out for those with incomes exceeding $218,000.

Those who can be claimed as a dependent for tax purposes, like many college students, are also ineligible for the payments, as well as undocumented immigrants who don't have Social Security numbers. That includes citizens who are married to someone who files taxes using a taxpayer identification number.

The payments are worth up to $1,200 per individual and up to $2,400 per couple, plus an additional $500 for each dependent.

Oregon Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 65170

Reported Deaths: 820
CountyCasesDeaths
Multnomah14988210
Washington881596
Marion8321127
Clackamas535376
Umatilla409948
Lane382037
Jackson335623
Malheur230839
Deschutes191114
Yamhill156516
Linn126018
Polk105115
Douglas80415
Jefferson76511
Benton7097
Union6912
Klamath6854
Morrow6197
Lincoln56313
Wasco47218
Josephine4314
Columbia4223
Coos3831
Hood River3611
Clatsop3330
Baker2573
Crook1906
Grant1221
Tillamook1110
Curry1052
Lake980
Harney861
Wallowa702
Sherman230
Gilliam210
Wheeler20
Unassigned00

California Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 1114524

Reported Deaths: 18726
CountyCasesDeaths
Los Angeles3645207438
San Bernardino845311129
Riverside806761400
San Diego71648968
Orange696941554
Kern38316445
Fresno35973471
Sacramento33133546
Santa Clara30676463
Alameda27485499
San Joaquin24649503
Contra Costa22412258
Stanislaus20370416
Tulare19752303
Ventura18040174
Imperial15053353
San Francisco14445158
Monterey13886113
San Mateo13203169
Sonoma11428155
Merced10986176
Santa Barbara10922133
Kings1003886
Solano934980
Marin7518128
Placer577867
Madera571480
San Luis Obispo561835
Yolo419975
Shasta409542
Santa Cruz389827
Butte366459
Napa275717
Sutter263813
El Dorado19304
San Benito174115
Yuba173210
Lassen14803
Tehama143523
Mendocino138522
Nevada10189
Lake83218
Glenn8296
Humboldt7309
Tuolumne7088
Colusa6426
Mono4993
Siskiyou4951
Amador45016
Calaveras43421
Inyo28316
Del Norte2731
Plumas1770
Trinity1130
Modoc1110
Mariposa1042
Alpine420
Sierra170
Unassigned00
Medford
Overcast
47° wxIcon
Hi: 48° Lo: 33°
Feels Like: 47°
Brookings
Overcast
51° wxIcon
Hi: 53° Lo: 42°
Feels Like: 51°
Crater Lake
Overcast
42° wxIcon
Hi: 42° Lo: 25°
Feels Like: 36°
Grants Pass
Overcast
45° wxIcon
Hi: 48° Lo: 33°
Feels Like: 45°
Klamath Falls
Overcast
42° wxIcon
Hi: 44° Lo: 23°
Feels Like: 36°
Few Monday showers
KDRV Radar
KDRV Fire Danger
KDRV Weather Cam

Community Events