4th stimulus check? How you could see more money in 2021

President Joe Biden this week in a speech before Congress presented his next two stimulus proposals to help struggling Americans through the end of 2021 and into 2022. The next two proposals will be a companion to March’s American Rescue Plan that sent $1,400 stimulus checks to eligible families and individuals. As of this week, the IRS has made about 163 million payments as part of that bill, including “plus-up payments.” A fourth stimulus check is one way Congress could send money to those most in need. A potential fourth payment could also take the form of recurring payments.

In March, a group of 10 progressive lawmakers, including Sens. Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders, asked Biden to include regular stimulus payments (PDF) in his next stimulus bill: “We urge you to include recurring direct payments and automatic unemployment insurance extensions tied to economic conditions in your Build Back Better long-term economic plan.” A few weeks later, another group of 21 Democrats made a similar request to Biden.

While the third stimulus check will help the economy to grow rapidly, it’ll also grow unevenly, economists say, with some cities projected to hurt for “decades,” even with COVID-19 vaccinations on the upswing and the US economy showing glimmers of hope. Would more direct payments arrive in a different form, other than a stimulus check? We spell out some possibilities below. Additionally, here’s how to track your payment and contact the IRS if there’s a problem. Also, here’s how to calculate your child tax credit. This story is updated frequently.

The next two stimulus bills are on the table. Will they include a fourth stimulus check?

Biden’s American Rescue Plan that passed in March is the first spending package in 2021, with $1,400 checks$300 extra in weekly unemployment benefits and an expanded child tax credit lined up. (See if you qualify for the recurring child tax credit payments.) The Biden administration is working on a sequel, a package the president refers to as the Build Back Better plan. That proposal aims to invest in the nation’s energy grid, transportationbroadband and water systems — and may not include stimulus checks, despite the urging of progressive senators (PDF).

(Note: There’s some debate over what counts as a “relief,” “rescue” or “stimulus” package. For the purposes of this article, “stimulus” refers to any funding, check or measure in response to the coronavirus pandemic or to inject money into the US economy.)…Read more>>


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