Economic Impact Payments – Who, What, When, Where & Why


Last week the IRS began distributing economic impact payments to millions of Americans as part of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act (CARES Act). More will receive payments as the IRS is calculating and automatically sending payments to eligible individuals.   

I put this “5 W’s” together to help you identify any clients you have who you may need to check in with to ensure they have received their payment. Feel free to send this short article to your clients who have questions about their eligibility. 

WHO is eligible:  

  • US Citizens, permanent residents or qualifying alien residents 
  • Can’t be claimed as a dependent on someone else’s return 
  • Must have a SSN that is valid for employment — There is an exception that allows that if either spouse is member of the U.S. Armed Forces at any time during the year then only 1 spouse needs to have a valid SSN
  • Have adjusted gross income within the parameters set by the legislation 

WHAT is it: 

The EIP is a payment of up to $1200 for those who qualify — $75,000/$112,500/$150,000 (Individuals (I)/Head of Household (HOH)/Married Filing Jointly(MFJ)) 

Reduced payment amounts if AGI is:  

  • $75,000 – $99,000 (I) 
  • $112,500 – $136,500 (HOH) 
  • $150,000 – $198,000 (MFJ) 

Payments are reduced by $5 for every $100 of income above the thresholds.

WHERE is the money: 

  • The funds will be deposited directly into your account, which the IRS has from: 
  • Direct deposit info from your most recent tax return 
  • If you provided the  information on the IRS Get My Payment application 
  • If you used the Non-filers: Enter Payment Info Here tool 

WHEN will I receive it: 

Most payments have already been processed and should have been received. 

WHY haven’t I received my payment: 

The IRS needs more information. Check IRS Get My Payment to learn more about your status.

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Gary DeHart has worked in media for more than 25 years and has been instrumental in developing new revenue streams and business opportunities for the companies he has worked for. Prior to launching Insightful Accountant (formerly Intuitive Accountant), Gary was the Associate Publisher of Accounting Today. Prior to working in media serving the public accounting market, he worked in media for employee benefit managers and brokers, automotive design, textile manufacturing and recreational boating. In addition to being the Publisher and Managing Partner of Insightful Accountant, Gary works with select clients within the accounting market on channel development and growth. He is an Assistant Scoutmaster with the Boy Scouts of America, enjoys fly fishing, time on the beach, cooking on the Big Green Egg and spending time with his family.