Close to two-thirds of Americans support the idea of a fourth round of stimulus checks as they struggle to cope with rising prices. The federal administration has taken multiple measures in the last half of 2022 to contain inflation, though there has been little relief for common people, especially low and moderate-income groups. But will 2023 be different?
The federal administration has struggled for over a year to contain rising inflation, high-interest rates, and labor shortages. It has raised concerns about a long and deep recession. Amid such economic uncertainty, it is clear that low and moderate-income Americans continue to struggle in a year that has seen a negative rise in income for the first time in decades.
The past three years have been the worst for Americans in decades as they had to contend both with a killer pandemic and also the economic crisis that it caused. While there has been a general rise in wages of around 3.5%, it has been negated by the record rise in inflation that has been the highest in over 40 years.
For the first time since November 1981, inflation crossed the 8% mark and even touched 9.1% in June 2022.
But despite popular demands, the American government has been unable to come up with a fourth stimulus check, tied down as they are in federal politics.
The midterms have made matters more difficult for Joe Biden as he loses control over the House of Representatives. Getting a bill through is now all the more difficult for the American president.
A section of analysts says any further stimulus checks will only aggravate the economic situation and only lead to another round of price rises. They contend that it will also lead to an additional burden on taxpayers and the final sum will be zero at the end.
Beth Akers of the American Enterprise Institute wrote that handing out money in the middle of an inflationary environment will only make the situation worse.
But Americans have refused to give up on expecting additional support in the new year. While states continue to pay out inflation relief and stimulus checks to residents, a tweet by President Biden ushering in the new year has raised hope among Americans eager for continuing support from the federal government.
At the moment, the only federal stimulus checks that will go out are to the 9.5 million Americans who did not collect their economic impact payments and the expanded version of the Child Tax Credit stimulus check.
Throughout the pandemic, the Internal Revenue Service and the Treasury strived to get COVID-19 pandemic relief into the hands of millions of Americans. It was especially vital to support those with struggling lower income, limited internet access, or facing the prospect of being evicted from their homes.
But despite the herculean effort amid unsurmountable odds, the IRS missed out on paying close to 10 million Americans as there was no data available on those citizens.
Residents In Handful Of States To Get Stimulus Checks In 2023
states stepped in to help out residents even as the federal stimulus checks came to an end by December 2021. Around 20 states sent out various inflation relief measures in the form of direct stimulus checks, tax rebates, debit cards, discount cards, and relief from various sales taxes to residents.
While most state stimulus checks were one-off measures and came to an end in 2022, some states have continued sending out payments through the new year. the payments are expected to continue for the first two quarters of 2023.
California was among the handful of states that timed their payments for the last quarter of 2022, coinciding with the festive season. The main requirement for qualifying for the stimulus check was the timely filing of the 2020 California state income tax return.
Beneficiaries had to submit the returns by October 15, 2021. Governor Gavin Newsom had initially proposed a gas debit card worth $400 for cars registered in California. Households would have received a maximum of two cards. Their administration also proposed for households without cars, with families entitled to a transit card, in the form of a debit card.
But the state Congressmen belonging to the Democratic Party prevailed upon Gov. Newsom to go for a direct stimulus check, on the lines of the earlier two rounds of the Golden State Stimulus Check I and II.
Residents who did not exceed the maximum individual AGI of $250,000 and joint income of $500,000 for 2020 were entitled to a stimulus check. the amount was divided into three tiers with residents earning $75,000 or less as individual filers and double that for joint filers getting $350 each plus another $350 if they include any dependent in their filing list.
The maximum amount of stimulus checks went out to joint holders in this slab if they include any dependents. The total in this case comes to $1,050, $350 for each filer plus the same amount for any dependent.
Coloradans are also getting stimulus checks and any resident above 18 is eligible (as of December 31, 2021). They must also have been residents for the whole of 2021 and should also have filed their 2021 state returns or applied for a PTC rebate.
The amount given out to residents of Colorado depends on the filing status shown on the income tax returns for 2021 and it is $750 for single filers and double that amount for married couples filing jointly.
While most payments went out by September, residents who applied for and received an extension on their filing date, which was October 17, 2022, will have their payment delayed. The Colorado stimulus check payments are expected to be completed by January 2023.
Delaware was another state that delayed its payments. Although the initial round of $300 inflation relief stimulus checks went out in May, the final payments have continued through December and are expected to continue in January 2023. Residents who filed a state income tax return for 2020 are eligible to receive the Delaware relief rebate. Later adults who are at least 18 years old and have filed their 2021 Delaware stimulus checks in time were also eligible for the payments.