The solution? One-off $600 stimulus checks to individuals to help them with their financial struggles. This is not the first round of government funding. The first stimulus checks, sent in 2020, included up to $1,200 per individual plus an additional $500 for eligible dependents.
How Does it Work?
Individuals earning up to $75,000 annually are eligible for this funding, regardless of where they are based across the United States. The logic of the income threshold follows the CARES (Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security) Act. Families are eligible to receive extra funding with an extra $600 for every dependent child under the age of 17. To ease the financial burden of unemployment, unemployed workers would receive an extra $300 in weekly benefits for 11 weeks until March 14, 2021.
In order to receive these payments, there is no need for the eligible individuals to do anything. The payments will arrive automatically into taxpayer’s accounts and there is no need to contact financial institutions or the IRS regarding payment enquiries. The payments will be received via direct deposit or via Direct Express, depending on how the first round of payments in 2020 was received.
Recommendations from Financial Experts
When advising what to do with the $600 stimulus check, financial experts have certain recommendations for different income brackets. For those who are unemployed and relying on this government funding as a source of income, they are advised to cover their basic living expenses. For those luckier individuals who find themselves in a better financial situation, they are advised to pay off high-interest debt, save the money or invest.
Is This a Viable Solution?
Rick Dent of Finger Finance commented: “The stimulus checks work on the assumption that the majority of Americans have an emergency fund able to cover around 6 months of expenses.”
“However, this assumption is possibly overestimated and there are surely many individuals, across the country, without this kind of safety net.”
“The Average living expenses in the United States are around $1,000 monthly, of course depending on individual circumstances and location,. With this in mind, $600 is a strange amount and not even enough to cover the most basic expenses for a month. It also does not make sense for those how have huge sums of disposable income, earning up to $75,000 per year – why should they get the same amount as someone who struggles to make it to the end of the month?”
Third Stimulus Check
Under the Biden administration, there are talks of a third stimulus check in the near future. These funds would have a broader eligibility criteria. This would include dependents over the age of 17 (for example, higher education students), older adult relatives and those with certain disabilities. By opening this up, it would include around 13.5 million adult dependents who are currently excluded by existing eligibility criteria.