Should You Expect Any Additional Stimulus This Month?

Stimulus Check: USA government check, payment.
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For millions of American households, January was the first month in many that came and went without any stimulus payments. For most, February will bring more of the same — a hole in their budgets where federal checks had been while prices keep rising, rising and rising.

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Moving into the second month of the year, some families will be eligible to receive leftover stimulus money that they have coming to them, mostly through their tax refunds, the first of which the IRS will begin issuing this month.

Child Tax Credit Payments Won’t Return in February — or at All in 2022, It Seems

In January, millions of families went without an advance child tax credit payment for the first time in half a year. The credit paid $300 a month for young children up to 5 and $250 for older kids up to 17. Congress failed to pass legislation that would have extended the credit into 2022 by Dec. 31 of last year, which guaranteed that checks would not go out in January.

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There was talk, however, that Congress might extend the child tax credit through the passage of a series of smaller bills. If that had happened, there was a chance that eligible households would have received two checks in February to make up for the skipped January payment.

That didn’t happen, and as inflation continues to rise, the chances of legislative success appear slimmer now than they were last month — and the prospects were pretty bleak then.

One thing is certain, there will be no child tax credit advance payment for February, at a minimum.

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Early Filers Could Get Stimulus Payments via Their Tax Refunds

President Joe Biden’s pandemic relief package increased the child tax credit to $3,600 per child — it has since reverted back to $2,000 — and most people received half as advance payments. The other half is refundable and will come back to you when you file your returns.

If you’ve filed already or plan to soon, you might be receiving the second chunk of that 2021 stimulus this month. That, according to the IRS, is because “by law, the IRS cannot issue a refund involving the Earned Income Tax Credit or Additional Child Tax Credit before mid-February.”

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Some Growing Families Could Receive Up to $5,000

With the first refunds scheduled to arrive in February, many families could be eligible for a big chunk of stimulus cash that they missed out on the first time around. Those who had a baby in 2021 after the year’s stimulus payments had been calculated and distributed could receive up to $5,000 through their tax refunds.

They would get $3,600 for the full payment of the expanded child tax credit and a $1,400 economic impact payment for the new child’s status as a dependent. In order to receive the funds in February, however, they will have to file their taxes early as the payment is only possible through a tax refund.

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Your State Might Lend a Hand

Most Americans will not receive any federal stimulus in February, but a few states are still assisting their residents with pandemic relief programs of their own. Among them are Florida, Tennessee, Texas and New York, but only on a limited basis to specific populations. No state is issuing checks to all residents statewide. Most states are not issuing any payments at all, and most Americans are settling into life without stimulus.

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About the Author

Andrew Lisa has been writing professionally since 2001. An award-winning writer, Andrew was formerly one of the youngest nationally distributed columnists for the largest newspaper syndicate in the country, the Gannett News Service. He worked as the business section editor for amNewYork, the most widely distributed newspaper in Manhattan, and worked as a copy editor for, a financial publication in the heart of Wall Street's investment community in New York City.
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