In response to the economic challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic, the United States government approved several stimulus packages to provide financial assistance to individuals and families. The third stimulus check was one of the key elements of the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021, signed into law by President Joe Biden on March 11, 2021. Here’s a detailed look at how much the third stimulus check was and the criteria that determined the amounts.
The third stimulus check provided:
- $1,400 for individual taxpayers: Single filers with an adjusted gross income (AGI) of up to $75,000 received the full amount.
- $2,800 for married couples filing jointly: Couples with a combined AGI of up to $150,000 received the full amount.
- $1,400 for each dependent: This included adult dependents, such as college students and disabled adults, unlike previous stimulus checks.
The amount of the third stimulus check was reduced for those with incomes above the aforementioned thresholds and phased out completely for those at higher income levels:
- Individuals with AGIs between $75,000 and $80,000: These filers received a reduced amount, with the payment completely phasing out at $80,000.
- Married couples filing jointly with AGIs between $150,000 and $160,000: These couples received a reduced amount, with the payment completely phasing out at $160,000.
- Head of Household filers with AGIs between $112,500 and $120,000: These filers also received a reduced amount, with the payment completely phasing out at $120,000.
Unlike previous stimulus checks, the third payment included all dependents, not just children under 17. This expanded the coverage to include older high school students, college students, and adult dependents.
2. Tax Filing Status
The IRS used information from the latest processed tax returns (2019 or 2020) to determine eligibility and calculate the payment amounts. If significant income changes occurred between those years, there may have been some adjustments.
3. Social Security and Other Federal Beneficiaries
People who received Social Security, Supplemental Security Income (SSI), Railroad Retirement Board (RRB) benefits, and Veterans Affairs (VA) beneficiaries were also eligible for the third stimulus check, even if they didn’t file taxes.
The third stimulus check played a crucial role in providing financial relief to millions of Americans struggling with the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. With amounts reaching up to $1,400 per individual and $1,400 for each dependent, many households found essential support during a challenging period. However, income thresholds and phase-outs ensured that the payments were targeted at those deemed most in need.