STATEN ISLAND, N.Y. — While many Americans are still awaiting the arrival of third stimulus checks, many lawmakers are pushing for recurring direct payments throughout 2021 as part of a fourth government package.

The third stimulus payments — of up to $1,400 per American — are still being dolled out by the Internal Revenue Service.

In fact, the IRS, the U.S. Department of the Treasury, and the Bureau of the Fiscal Service announced this week that more than two million supplemental stimulus checks are being delivered in the fifth batch of Economic Impact Payments (EIP).

So far, a total of 159 million disbursements with a total value of $376 billion has been dolled out as part of the $1.9 trillion American Reduce Plan, according to the IRS.

However, for many Americans still suffering amid the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, the third stimulus isn’t enough.

According to U.S. Census Bureau data collected in March 2021, nearly 30% of Americans came up short when trying to cover household expenses.

Direct stimulus payments have helped suppress poverty in the U.S. In fact, a fourth stimulus check alone would help 6.6 million people out poverty in 2021, according to a report from the Urban-Brookings Tax Policy Center.

“Housing instability and food insecurity remain concerns for many, and an additional payment could help with both,” Elaine Maag of Urban-Brookings Tax Policy Center told CNBC Make It. “Studies on how other economic impact payments were spent indicate people spent the money on necessities like food, housing and bills.”

FOURTH STIMULUS?

President Joe Biden has talked about a potential $3 trillion spending bill for 2021. The new stimulus bill would focus on revving the economy, combatting inequality, and repairing the country’s infrastructure that has been fractured due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

However, many lawmakers — including a group of 21 Democratic Senators who recently sent a letter to President Joe Biden — are asking the President to approve recurring direct payments and automatic unemployment insurance extensions as part of a 2021 stimulus package.

In addition, two months before the American Rescue Plan was signed into law, 53 House Democrats sent a letter to Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris asking for recurring stimulus checks until the economy rebounds from the losses incurred during the pandemic. According to published reports, there are now 74 lawmakers who have joined the push for a fourth stimulus package.

But Biden has yet to say whether he supports a fourth stimulus payment.

In the January letter, the Congress members asked for “equal payments to adults and dependents.”

“One more check is not enough. Another one-time round of checks would provide a temporary timeline, but when that money runs out, families will once again struggle to pay for basic necessities,” the group of lawmakers said in the letter.

“Recurring direct payments until the economy recovers will ensure that people can meet their basic needs, provide racially equitable solutions, and shorten the length of the recession,” the letter states.

THIRD STIMULUS

Many families will get more money from the third stimulus bill than they did from the first two stimulus packages because payments are being sent for adult dependents.

Unlike the first two stimulus payments, the third payout is not restricted to children under 17. Eligible families will get a payment based on all of their qualifying dependents claimed on their return, including older relatives, like college students, adults with disabilities, parents and grandparents.

The payment per person will be larger for most people than what they received from previous packages.

Most families will get $1,400 per person, including all dependents claimed on their tax return. Typically, this means a single person with no dependents will get $1,400, while a family of four (married couple with two dependents) will get $5,600.

To qualify for the full amount, an individual must have an adjusted gross income of $75,000 or below. For individuals who are the head of household, the adjusted gross income must be $112,500 or below. If you’re a married couple filing jointly, total yearly earnings must be $150,000 or below to receive the full stimulus check.

No action is needed by most taxpayers to receive payment.

If you are eligible for the third stimulus check but have yet to receive payment, you can learn when the payment will hit your bank account by using the Internal Service Revenue’s (IRS) “Get My Payment” tool.

You can use the Get My Payment tool, available in English and Spanish, only on IRS.gov. It updates once per day, usually overnight.

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