With many Americans still reliant on #coronavirus relief programs for much-needed financial support during the pandemic, the recent movement of the latest stimulus bill through Congress brings welcome news.
The bill, though many are hopeful it will, has not yet passed a Senate vote. So, if you’re waiting on stimulus money or relief programs, what needs to happen before this bill is passed and how long might you need to wait for your payment? We’ll break down this and more below.
The new stimulus bill is now on to the Senate to be voted on in order to be enacted into law. If the Senate rejects this bill, it may be sent back to the House for reconsideration and a second round of voting.
The Senate could vote as early as Wednesday, March 2nd, however if the Senate votes against this bill it could be sent back to the House to be reviewed and and voted on once more. Many in Congress want this bill to be passed quickly before unemployment other pandemic relief programs lapse on March 14th, 2021, though debates over the overall cost of this stimulus package could delay it further.
With a potential payout of $1,400 in the balance for many Americans, the arrival date of a new stimulus check is where the focus lies. Although it’s impossible to predict if and when this bill will pass and be signed into law, estimates have put a potential arrival date around the final week of March if the stimulus bill both passes votes in Congress and is signed into law before or on the promised deadline of March 14th.
It’s important to note that arrivals for direct deposit recipients will be much quicker than for paper check or Economic Impact Payment (EIP) card recipients, with both paper check and EIP card recipients expected to receive their payments closer to Mid-April.
This bill is currently under its first round through the Senate. If the newest stimulus bill is sent back to the House, that could delay the process further. So what cost-related debates are happening now and how could they affect the aid you receive?
In its current state the current eligibility requirements allow single tax filers making under $100k per year to collect a $1,400 stimulus payment. Those who are married and have filed taxes jointly making a combined $200k or less per year can also collect the full $1,400. Anyone who qualifies through these rules can also collect $1,400 per child.
In order to cut back government spending, some have proposed changing the rules to reflect a stricter limit on who qualifies for a stimulus payment based on their gross income from their last filed tax records. Based on how much income you last reported to the IRS, this may affect your ability to claim a stimulus payment.
The current bill includes a renewal of federal unemployment benefits at $400 per week. Some Senators think $400 per week is too high, however, and think costs could be spared if the weekly unemployment payout was reduced to $300 per week instead.
Those who wish to claim unemployment should track these changes, as they’ll directly impact how much an unemployment claimant can receive once this bill is enacted.
Some claim that relief funding for coronavirus related state and local government programs is both too high and too broad and have been calling for more specific explanations about how funds should be allocated and used by this bill, along with a lower overall price tag related to state and local needs.
If you’re relying on state or community run programs now, you’ll want to track how this debate affects the amount of funding your local government could receive.
Is the new stimulus bill overfunded or should it remain as-is? Share your opinion in the comments.