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Third Stimulus Check: What Should You Know

Updated : February 19th, 2021

If all goes well, President Joe Biden’s $1.9 trillion Coronavirus relief bill would provide another round of federal stimulus checks to millions of Americans. The $1.9 trillion stimulus bill includes various provisions such as the $1,400 third stimulus check, $400 unemployment weekly bonus checks, and many more. 

In this post, we will tell you about the various provisions included in the $1.9 trillion stimulus package and who qualifies for the third round of stimulus checks. 

More About The New Stimulus Package

Recently, the House of Representatives approved President Joe Biden’s much-awaited $1.9 trillion American Rescue Plan. The concerned leaders are working on the legislation so that the bill comes into effect before the supplemental benefits expire mid-March. 

The new stimulus bill provides a $1,400 direct payment to the Americans. It also includes the following provisions. 

  • Raise the minimum wage to $15 per hour
  • Provide $30 billion in support for landlords and renters 
  • Increase the Child Tax Credit (for dependents) from $2,000 to $3,600 for children under the age of 6 and $3,000 for children ages 6 to 17
  • Extend the payment relief for federally guaranteed mortgages, foreclosures, and the moratorium on evictions until September
  • Increase the Earned Income Tax Credit to nearly $1,500 from a max of $530. This would raise the income limit to around $21,000 from $16,000 and allow those over age 65 to claim the credit for 2021
  • Increase the Child and Dependent Care Tax Credit to a max of 50% from a max of 35% of qualifying child care expenses 
  • Increase weekly Unemployment Insurance benefit amounts under the Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation (FPUC) program from $300 to $400 and extend benefits under the Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation (PEUC) program through September

Who Qualifies For $1,400 Payment?

The third stimulus check would keep the income limit the same for the first and second checks. But because the third checks are expected to max out at $1,400 $200 more than the first round, some people who didn’t qualify for previous stimulus checks can hope to get a small amount this time. 

Here’s the income limit to be eligible for the full amount under the third stimulus bill based on your Adjusted Gross Income (AGI).

Type of taxpayer Full $1,400 per person maximum (based on AGI) Not eligible (based on AGI)
Singles  Less than $75,000 $100,000 or more
Head of household Less than $112,500 $150,000 or more
Married couple filing jointly Less than $150,000 $200,000 or more


Dependents over age 16 who were not eligible for the first and second checks may qualify for the third check. That is, college students, older adult relatives, and people with certain disabilities may receive a check as part of the household total. Similarly, those who file jointly and earn $198,000 may get $112, and heads of household earning $137,000 may get $486.

Note that the above-listed eligibility criteria may or may not vary when the bill is signed by President Joe Biden and is rolled out to the citizens.

When Will You Get A $1,400 Check?

“We hope to have this all done by the end of February,” House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said on Feb. 11. “Certainly on the president’s desk in time to offset the March 14 deadline where some unemployment benefits would expire.”

Below are the hypothetical dates for rolling out payments for two situations: if a bill becomes a law before March 14, 2021, or if it slips a week due to negotiations and the timeline to create the bill.

Stimulus check passes Congress Friday, March 12 Monday, March 22
Stimulus bill signed into law Sunday, March 14 Tuesday, March 23
First direct deposit check sent Week of March 22 Week of March 29
First paper checks sent Week of March 29 Week of April 5
First EIP cards sent Week of April 5 Week of April 12
Claims for missing stimulus money open May 3 May 3

Also, note that payment by different methods may begin to show up at different times. Payments through Direct Deposit may arrive faster but check, or debit card may take a longer time.   

How Will You Receive The Third Stimulus Check?

You may receive the $1,400 stimulus checks by direct deposit with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). If you don’t have direct deposit with the IRS, you may receive a check or debit card in the mail. 

Why File Your Taxes At The Earliest?

The IRS started accepting tax returns on February 12, 2021, with the filing window closing on April 15, 2021. That means the agency may start rolling out $1,400 stimulus checks in the middle of tax season. If you don’t file your 2020 tax return before the new bill is passed, the agency will rely on your 2019 tax return to calculate your stimulus amount, and the 2019 return might reflect your loss in any income in 2020 or a new child.

But by filing for a 2020 tax return sooner, you may be able to claim the extra money on Form 1040s through the Recovery Rebate Credit or an adjustment between what you got from the IRS versus what you are entitled to.  

Closing Thoughts 

The provisions included in the new stimulus package may change over the period. Let’s wait and see if the leaders modify the provisions or make changes to the eligibility requirements to qualify for the $1,400 direct payment when passing the new bill. 


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