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COVID-19 Impact

Social Security Recipients to Automatically Receive Stimulus Checks

Jo Willetts, EA Director, Tax Resources Published On April 07, 2020


Updated on April 17, 2020

In accordance with updated IRS policy effective April 1, 2020, all Americans receiving Social Security benefits will have stimulus checks deposited into the same accounts as their benefits. This replaces prior guidance which required Social Security beneficiaries to file a simple return to access stimulus funds.

Beneficiaries are no longer required to file tax returns of any sort to access these stimulus funds, and in its place, the IRS will utilize information found on Form SSA-1099 and Form RRB-1099.

This new guidance will also impact railroad retirees receiving equivalent benefits. Benefit recipients who receive their checks in the mail will also receive their stimulus checks in the same fashion. Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin recently commented as follows:

“We want to ensure that our senior citizens, individuals with disabilities, and low-income Americans receive Economic Impact Payments quickly and without undue burden. Social Security recipients who are not typically required to file a tax return need to take no action, and will receive their payment directly to their bank account.”

The information generated from IRS Forms SSA-1099 and RRB-1099 will allow benefit recipients to receive a $1200 stimulus check once funds are disbursed. Any recipients with dependent children under the age of 17, or a spouse with no income and no requirement to file a tax return, should file a zero income return. This can be done through Jackson Hewitt or by visiting the IRS website

Regarding the general public, qualifying adults will receive a $1200 stimulus check with an additional $500 for each qualifying dependent under the age of 17.

Income caps are applied individually with those filing single restricted to annual income of $75,000 or less, those filing as head of house restricted to income of $112,500 or less, and joint filers restricted to annual income of $150,000 or less.

Individuals with income exceeding those caps will see stimulus checks reduced by $5 for every additional $100 in income. To see what you may eligible for, visit Jackson Hewitt’s Coronavirus Information Center and try our new stimulus calculator. For additional information on IRS stimulus policy, please visit https://www.irs.gov/coronavirus.

About the Author

Jo Willetts, Director of Tax Resources at Jackson Hewitt, has more than 25 years of experience in the tax industry. As an Enrolled Agent, Jo has attained the highest level of certification for a tax professional. She began her career at Jackson Hewitt as a Tax Pro, working her way up to General Manager of a franchise store. In her current role, Jo provides expert knowledge company-wide to ensure that tax information distributed through all Jackson Hewitt channels is current and accurate.

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