On what is normally Tax Day, we want to bring attention to the importance for COVID-19 economic stimulus payments to reach the most in-need low-income Americans, many of whom aren’t required to file tax returns annually which makes it harder to receive this necessary assistance.

The IRS now expects 80 million people to receive their stimulus payments by the end of the week and the “large majority of Americans [to] receive Economic Impact Payments within the next two weeks.” The one-time $1,200 economic impact payments will be provided to those making $75,000 or less per year and $2,400 for married couples with combined incomes of $150,000 or less per year and will provide an additional $500 for each eligible child.

The IRS has begun issuing economic impact payments (or “stimulus checks”) to individuals that provided direct deposit information when filing their 2018 or 2019 tax returns. But as many as 10 million low-income Americans who would otherwise be eligible for stimulus funds but who aren’t required to file tax returns are being required to jump through additional bureaucratic hoops and will get checks later than when they are needed most.

Low-income and working families have been disproportionately impacted by pandemic-related job loss. They have less savings to carry them through an emergency, and these economic impact payments are crucial for sustaining these families through the current crisis. Ensuring that all eligible Americans receive their stimulus payment will require a significant, coordinated effort.

We have a responsibility to ensure that these families are not left behind and receive the economic impact payments that they are entitled to.

People who have yet to file their 2018 or 2019 taxes and low-income individuals who make under $12,200 (and families who make under $24,400 per year) will get Economic Stimulus Payments, but  people who have filed previous returns are likely to receive their payments earlier via direct deposit than those who did not submit their 2018 or 2019 tax information who will likely receive their stimulus money in the form of a mailed check.  To speed up the process, residents must visit the IRS website and enter their bank account information.

The IRS created a website for people to be able to track when their payments should post to their accounts. Visit the IRS information center for FAQs if you have questions about access to stimulus funds.