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How to figure out if you’re eligible for a $1,400 stimulus check

Published Feb 24th, 2021 2:21PM EST
New stimulus check
Image: Andy Dean/Adobe
  • With Democrats poised to pass President Biden’s $1.9 trillion economic relief bill this week, millions of Americans are poised to get a new stimulus check soon.
  • The stimulus checks will generally be for $1,400, with some exceptions.
  • Here’s how to check how big your new stimulus check from the Biden administration will be.

A significant development is set to happen this week in the effort by the Biden administration and Democrats in Congress to pass a third round of stimulus checks, as part of President Biden’s $1.9 trillion economic relief legislation that he proposed almost as soon as he took office last month.

Democrats in the House of Representatives reportedly intend to pass the legislation by Friday, which would put the package that guarantees millions of Americans a new stimulus check for $1,400 within striking distance of becoming law. That will also fulfill a campaign pledge touted by the president, who promised voters that the checks would quickly start to be distributed if he won his bid for the White House. Meanwhile, here’s perhaps the biggest question people might have regarding this new round of coronavirus relief payments: How big will your check be?

Generally, the payments are for $1,400, but, of course, there will be exceptions. Plenty of people will get more than that as well as less than that amount — and some people won’t be eligible for any money at all. Here’s how to check where you fall on that spectrum:

The biggest thing to keep in mind is AGI — adjusted gross income. How much you have will determine your eligibility for a full or partial new stimulus check. The $1.9 trillion bill provides for $1,400 payments for anyone with an individual AGI up to $75,000; after that, the payments start to phase out. Married couples, meanwhile, can have an AGI of up to $150,000. As long as they’re not above that amount, they’ll get a check for $2,800, which represents a $1,400 check for both members of the couple.

Your AGI can be found on line 11 of the 2020 Form 1040, and on line 8b of the tax form from 2019.

Eligible Americans can also get a bigger check in some cases. For example, you can get an extra $1,400 on your stimulus check for each dependent. With the previous two stimulus checks from the Trump administration, dependents had to be under 17 years old, but this time around the category is expected to include children who are older than that, including college students and disabled adults.

A family of four, in other words, with two parents and two children would thus be able to receive up to $5,600 from the Biden administration (as long as the parents were under the AGI threshold).

Andy Meek Trending News Editor

Andy Meek is a reporter based in Memphis who has covered media, entertainment, and culture for over 20 years. His work has appeared in outlets including The Guardian, Forbes, and The Financial Times, and he’s written for BGR since 2015. Andy's coverage includes technology and entertainment, and he has a particular interest in all things streaming.

Over the years, he’s interviewed legendary figures in entertainment and tech that range from Stan Lee to John McAfee, Peter Thiel, and Reed Hastings.