$1,400 Stimulus Check: Do You Get One If You Live in a U.S. Territory?In an effort to inject much-needed cash to American families, the Internal Revenue Service has already sent out a total of one hundred twenty-seven million coronavirus relief checks under the American Rescue Plan.
Many might believe that the cash payments are only for American taxpayers, but what’s your status if you live in or were a resident last year of one of the U.S. territories?
According to the Social Security Administration (SSA), if you are one of four million people who live in the U.S. territories of American Samoa, Guam, Puerto Rico, the Northern Mariana Islands, or the U.S. Virgin Islands, you should expect to receive a stimulus check in early June.
However, know that those who are residing in a Freely Associated State— Micronesia, the Republic of the Marshall Islands, or the Republic of Palau—may not be entitled to the funds.
Also, keep in mind that the IRS does not distribute the stimulus payments to overseas territories—this particular endeavor is undertaken by local tax authorities based on information provided by the IRS. So, in order to claim your cash, you must contact your local tax authority.
If you didn’t receive either of the first two stimulus payments, you as a resident of a U.S. territory can still try to claim the money that you’re entitled to from the U.S. government. For this tax season, a Recovery Rebate Credit has been added to all returns, so that people mired in this particular situation can eventually receive the overdue payments.
According to the IRS website, it states that “if you didn’t get any payments or got less than the full amounts, you may qualify for the Recovery Rebate Credit and must file a 2020 tax return to claim the credit even if you don’t normally file.” The agency also advises that you keep the form you receive regarding your stimulus payment and refer to it when you file your tax return.
Perhaps the reason why you didn’t get the first two stimulus checks is because you failed to meet the income thresholds that are in place for all American taxpayers, so make sure to confirm if you even qualify.
According to the details of the American Rescue Plan, individuals who earn as much as $75,000 in adjusted gross income (AGI), or couples making $150,000—in addition to their children or adult dependents—qualify for the full $1,400 per individual.
Moreover, single parents with at least one dependent who earn $112,500 or less also get the full amount. Families in which some members have different citizenship and immigration classifications are eligible for a payment, if at least one person has a Social Security number.
The payments, however, phase out much more quickly than in previous rounds—an individual with an income of $80,000, or a couple with $160,000, will not be receiving any check.
Ethen Kim Lieser is a Minneapolis-based Science and Tech Editor who has held posts at Google, The Korea Herald, Lincoln Journal Star, AsianWeek, and Arirang TV. Follow or contact him on LinkedIn.