In 2020 and 2021, the federal government issued three stimulus checks to help Americans deal with the financial fallout from the pandemic. The stimulus payments helped many people meet basic expenses or build up savings.
Now that federal stimulus programs have ended, many states are stepping in to provide stimulus checks. Typically called tax rebates or refunds, these one-time state programs offer financial assistance to help taxpayers cope with inflation. If you live in one of these 18 states, you may receive a stimulus payment by the end of the year. Keep reading to find out if you qualify for stimulus money.
State residents' annual payment from Alaska's Permanent Fund Dividend will include an extra $650 Energy Relief Payment this year, for a total of $3,284. Residents who requested direct deposit have already received payments; the state started issuing paper checks on October 3.
The Middle Class Tax Refund will be issued automatically to qualifying residents who filed a 2020 California tax return by October 15, 2021. Eligible households will receive a minimum refund of $200, but may receive up to $1,050 depending on the adjusted gross income shown on their 2020 state tax return, filing status and whether they have a dependent. Payments, which will be issued by direct deposit if you e-filed your taxes or debit card if you didn't, are currently underway and will all be issued by January 31, 2023.
Colorado residents aged 18 and up as of December 31, 2021, who lived in the state all of 2021 and filed 2021 state income taxes by October 17th, 2022, will receive Colorado Cash Back payments of $750 (for single filers) and $1,500 (for joint filers). Payments are currently being issued; all payments will be issued by January 31, 2023.
Adult Delaware residents who qualified for a $300 "relief rebate" under the 2022 Delaware Relief Rebate Program began receiving payments in May 2022. Between November 1 and November 30, 2022, residents who were over age 18 and living in Delaware on December 31, 2021, and haven't received a rebate can apply online. Applicants must have a Social Security number, a Delaware residential mailing address, a driver's license or identification card issued by the Delaware Department of Motor Vehicles on or before December 31, 2021, and meet other verification standards. Payments for these applicants will be mailed after November 30, 2022.
Taxpayers who filed both 2020 and 2021 Georgia tax returns will automatically receive an additional refund based on their tax liability. Maximum refunds are $250 for single filers and married individuals filing separately; $375 for head of household filers; and $500 for married individuals filing jointly. If you filed your 2021 return by April 18, 2022, you should have already received payment; those who filed after that will wait longer for their checks.
Each qualifying resident who files an individual income tax return for the 2021 tax year on or before December 31, 2022, has been a resident of Hawaii for at least nine months, and can't be claimed as a dependent will receive a tax refund of either $100 or $300 per family member. The total amount depends on filing status, federal adjusted gross income and number of exemptions claimed. Certain people convicted of felonies or misdemeanors will not qualify.
If you filed your tax returns by August 31, 2022, you should get your refund by the end of November; those who filed between September 1, 2022, and December 31, 2022, should receive their refunds within 12 weeks of their filing date.
Idahoans who lived in the state all of 2020 and 2021 and filed an Idaho income tax return or a Form 24 for those years are eligible for two rebates whose amounts are based on 2020 tax return information. You must file your 2020 and 2021 tax returns by December 31, 2022, to qualify. The 2022 rebate amount is 1) $75 per taxpayer and dependent or 2) 12% of the tax reported on line 20 of Form 40 or line 42 of Form 43, whichever is greater. The amount of the 2022 Special Session rebate is 1) $300 for individual filers and $600 for joint filers or 2) 10% of a taxpayer's 2020 income taxes, whichever is greater. Payments will be issued through early 2023.
If you filed your 2021 state income taxes by October 17, 2022, you may be eligible for two rebates. The Illinois Income Tax Rebate gives qualifying taxpayers rebates of $50 or $100 depending on income and filing status, as well as $100 per dependent up to three dependents. The Property Tax Rebate is equal to the property tax credit you were qualified to claim on your 2021 IL-1040 (up to a maximum of $300). No action is needed to claim the rebates. Taxpayers eligible for both rebates will receive one payment. The state began issuing rebates in mid-September and estimates it will take "several months" to issue all of them.
Indianans may receive two Automatic Taxpayer Refunds (ATRs). If you filed an Indiana resident 2020 tax return by December 31, 2021, you qualify for and should have already received a $125 ATR. Those eligible for the $125 ATR are automatically eligible for a $200 ATR. Single filers or married filing separately will receive a total of $325; those married filing jointly will receive a total of $650.
Even if you weren't eligible for the $125 ATR, you are eligible for the $200 ATR if you receive Social Security benefits in 2022 and aren't claimed as a dependent on someone else's taxes. But rather than getting a refund, you must file a 2022 Indiana resident tax return before January 1, 2024 (even if you don't normally file due to your income), and claim the $200 ATR as a tax credit.
If you filed your 2021 Maine individual income tax return by October 31, 2022, as a full-year Maine resident and no one can claim you as a dependent, you may be eligible for $850 in COVID Pandemic Relief Payments. Your federal adjusted gross income must be less than $100,000 for filing single or married filing separately; $150,000 for filing as head of household; or $200,000 for married filing jointly. Checks are currently being issued; all payments should be received by the end of the year.
Under Chapter 62F, both residents and non-residents who file a 2021 Massachusetts state tax return on or before September 15, 2023, will be eligible for a refund. Refund amounts have not been determined yet but are estimated to be 14.0312% of your income tax liability for 2021. Those eligible will get their refunds automatically, either by check or direct deposit. If you filed by the October 17, 2022, deadline, you should get your refund by mid-December 2022; if you file after that, expect your rebate about one month after filing.
If you owned or rented your principal residence in New Jersey on October 1, 2019, you may be eligible for the Affordable New Jersey Communities for Homeowners and Renters (ANCHOR) tax relief program. Homeowners with incomes of $150,000 or less will receive $1,500; homeowners with incomes over $150,000 up to $250,000 will receive $1,000. Renters with income of $150,000 or less will receive $450. Payments are made by direct deposit or check. The deadline to apply is December 30, 2022. Homeowners can apply for benefits online or by calling 877-658-2972; tenants can only apply online or by paper application. The state will begin issuing payments by May 2023.
New Mexico offers two rebates for taxpayers who have filed or will file their 2021 state income taxes by May 31, 2023. The first rebate of $500 for single filers and married individuals filing separately and $1,000 for joint filers, heads of households and surviving spouses was sent in two payments in June and August 2022. Starting in July, taxpayers who filed 2021 state income taxes also began getting rebates of $500 for married couples filing jointly, heads of household and surviving spouses with incomes under $150,000. Single filers and married individuals filing separately with income under $75,000 began getting rebates of $250. No action is needed to receive the rebates; however, if you don't normally file state income taxes due to your income, and no one else claims you as a dependent, you can file to see if you qualify.
New York State homeowners who qualified for a School Tax Relief (STAR) credit or exemption in 2022 and meet other criteria will automatically receive a Homeowner Tax Rebate Credit (HTRC) check. Amounts are a percentage of your STAR exemption savings based on where you live, your income and your type of STAR plan. Expect your check between the time school tax bills are issued and when they are due in your area.
Homeowners whose New York City property is their primary residence and whose combined income is $250,000 or less will also receive a one-time property tax rebate of $150. Checks were mailed beginning in August; if you were behind on property taxes, you'll receive a credit instead of a check. If you don't receive STAR but think you may qualify for the rebate, apply online by November 15, 2022.
Eligible Pennsylvanians ages 65 and up; widows and widowers ages 50 and up; and people with disabilities ages 18 and up who are approved for a Property Tax/Rent Rebate on property taxes or rent paid in 2021 will receive an additional one-time bonus rebate equal to 70% of the original rebate amount they received. If you already filed your Property Tax/Rent Rebate application for the 2021 claim year, no action is needed. If you're eligible but haven't yet filed the rebate application, you must do so by December 31, 2022. The state started issuing bonus rebates by check and direct deposit in September.
A Child Tax Rebate payment of $250 per qualifying child, up to a maximum of three children (a total of $750), will be issued to taxpayers who have filed their 2021 state income tax, have a qualifying child dependent 18 years of age or under as of December 31, 2021, and meet residency and income qualifications. There's no need to apply. The state started issuing rebates in October; for those who filed taxes on the extended deadline of October 17, 2022, rebates will be issued starting in December 2022.
Taxpayers who file a 2021 state income tax return by October 17, 2022 (or by the extended due date, February 15, 2023), and have income tax liability are eligible for a rebate, whether they are South Carolina residents, part-time residents or non-residents. Spouses who filed their income tax jointly will receive one rebate. Rebate amounts are based on your tax liability and currently capped at $700, although the state legislature may increase that amount. If you filed taxes by October 17, 2022, you should receive the rebate by December 31, 2022. If you file on October 18, 2022, through February 15, 2023, you'll receive your rebate in March 2023. Rebates will be by direct deposit or check.
Taxpayers with a 2021 state tax liability qualify for a rebate of up to $250 for individual filers and up to $500 for joint filers. If you filed by September 5, 2022, you should have already received your rebate. You must file your taxes by November 1, 2022, to receive the rebate.
There Are Still Unclaimed Federal Stimulus Payments
In addition to the stimulus payments above, you may be eligible for federal stimulus money and other assistance you haven't yet claimed. The IRS has begun sending letters to over 9 million households that don't normally file federal income taxes because their incomes are too low. Even if you don't normally file federal income taxes, filing is necessary to claim the stimulus payments, child tax credits and other benefits. The letters will explain benefits you may be eligible for and how to file your taxes using the IRS' FreeFile tool until midnight Eastern time on November 17, 2022.
Are Stimulus Checks Taxed?
As an added bonus, stimulus payments are not considered taxable by the IRS. This gives you more money to work with when paying your bills, building your savings account or otherwise spending your stimulus money.
The Bottom Line
If you're fortunate enough to receive financial assistance from your state this year, make a plan for how to use the stimulus money. Even a small amount can help prevent late payments from dinging your credit report if you use it to make at least the minimum payments on your credit cards before the due date. Getting a bigger stimulus payment? Consider paying down high-interest credit card debt to help improve your credit score. You could also use the money to boost (or start) an emergency fund to prepare for unexpected expenses and economic ups and downs. Keeping your credit score in good shape will also help you weather economic storms. Consider signing up for Experian's free credit monitoring service to track your score; you'll also get alerts of changes to your credit report to help prevent identity theft.