DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – Will there be a second round $1,200 stimulus checks? Likely, yes.
Will the payments come in time for the holidays? Likely, no.
It has been seven months since the IRS began sending out the first round of COVID-19 relief stimulus checks.
Most low and middle income families received $1,200 for single taxpayers and $2,400 for married couple, as well as $500 for most children.
Almost immediately after the first round of stimulus funding went out, talks began on a second round of payments but lawmakers have yet to reach an agreement on an additional stimulus package.
Even if this Congress approves a second stimulus payment before Congress adjourns for the year in mid-December, it is unlikely the payments would reach most Americans before Christmas.
More realistically, payments would go out beginning in January.
On Monday, Nov. 16, President-elect Joe Biden called on Congress to pass a stimulus package.
This past weekend President Donald Trump tweeted, “Congress must now do a relief bill, need Democrats support. Make it big and focused. Get it done!”
“I think economically it’s viable because of the needs that are out there. I think politically it’s viable as well,” said Dr. Eric Morrow, dean of political science at Tarleton State University.
Morrow said with the general election is over and with COVID-19 cases on the rise across the country, he thinks the lame-duck Congress will pass a stimulus package that includes a second $1,200 stimulus payment.
However, right now, the two sides remain billions of dollar apart.
House Democrats are pushing a $2.2 trillion stimulus plan that would include a second check.
While Senate Republicans are pushing for a $500 billion plan, likely without second individual stimulus payment.
News that a COVID-19 vaccine could be available by the end of the year, Republicans say, strengthens their argument for a smaller, more focused, stimulus plan.
Dr. Morrow said with Georgia’s Senate runoff elections set for January, neither side wants to give the other credit for compromising.
“Politically, you want to show that you are trying to work in the best interests of your constituents. At the same time, you are trying to disparage the other side and say they are the ones stalling this,” Morrow explained.
If negotiations go nowhere, a deal might have to wait for the new Congress in January.
That would mean it would likely be late February, at the earliest, before anyone sees a second stimulus check.
Meanwhile, there are still millions of potentially eligible Americans who have not received a first stimulus check.
For those who did not file a tax return because they were not required, the IRS has set a deadline of 2:00 p.m. CST Saturday, November 21, to use the Non-Filers: Enter Info Here tool on IRS.gov to register for a payment.
If a person did not receive a payment, they can also claim the Recovery Rebate Credit when filing a tax return on their their 2020 taxes next year.
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