Written by Spotloan

If you’ve been following the news related to the coronavirus, you likely know that the White House and leaders of Congress recently negotiated a $2 trillion recovery package. As part of this package, various taxpayers across the United States may be able to receive a $1200 stimulus check.

Here at Spotloan, we want to ensure you know what you need to know about this pending payment.

Protect Yourself with These Three Tips Regarding Your Coronavirus Stimulus Check

  1. You don’t need to take any further action to receive your check. If the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has your bank account information, then your stimulus check will be direct-deposited. If you have not provided bank information, then your check will be mailed to you.
  2. You will not be asked to send an email to the IRS or any other organization in order to receive your check. If you receive an email asking for you to provide personal information via an email, you should assume that this is a scam.
  3. Just as you should not be providing personal information via email, you should not be required to provide any personal information to anyone, in order to receive your check. As this stimulus check is intended for taxpayers who have previously filed taxes with the IRS, no one should be asking for your personal information.

How will my Stimulus Check Amount be Calculated?

If you have not yet filed your 2019 tax return, don’t worry, and remember that you now have until July 15, 2020 to file your 2019 taxes. So, if you haven’t filed for 2019, the IRS will use the information you provided in your 2018 tax return to calculate your income.

Here is who will receive the stimulus, and how it will be calculated:

  • Individuals with an adjusted gross income of $75,000 or less will be eligible for up to $1,200 ($2,400 for joint tax returns) and $500 for each qualifying child. 
  • Those with little or no tax liability (tax debts owed) also will get $1,200 ($2,400 for joint returns).
  • Payments will be reduced for American taxpayers who earn over $75,000 (or $150,000 for those filing a joint return). In this case, the amount you may receive will be reduced by 5% of the amount that your income is over $75,000. Thus, if you make $85,000 annually, you would reduce your $1200 check down to $700 (the $500 reduction is equivalent to 5% of the $10,000 that you earn over $75,000).

Do Not Open Emails or Click on Links that You Do Not Know are Safe 

Though it is always important to protect your identity, here at Spotloan, we want to remind you that cyber-security is important now more than ever. With extra time on their hands now due to various stay-at-home initiatives, online fraudsters are hard at work. For this reason, it is important that you follow these important safety tips from the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), to protect yourself from becoming a victim of online fraud.

The following tips are courtesy of a recent Public Service Announcement from the FBI.

  • Do not open attachments or click links within emails from senders you don't recognize.
  • Do not provide your username, password, date of birth, social security number, financial data, or other personal information in response to an email or robocall.
  • Always verify the web address of legitimate websites and manually type them into your browser.
  • Check for misspellings or wrong domains within a link (for example, an address that should end in a ".gov" ends in .com" instead).