PHILADELPHIA--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Millions of individuals and families could miss out on stimulus payments because they don’t know how to get them. An estimated 360,000 people in Pennsylvania alone are considered non-filers, which means they will not receive their government stimulus checks. They will need to file a tax return or complete an online IRS form by October 15 to get the payment this year. Campaign for Working Families (CWF) is assisting all PA residents in completing their tax returns for free so they can receive their stimulus dollars.
The outstanding payments amount to roughly $337 million for Pennsylvanians, which — if delivered and spent — could reduce hardship and give state and local economies a much-needed boost. These payments would go to low-income individuals and families at a time when the need is rising due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This includes families with children and people who have been disconnected from work opportunities for a long period.
“We know people in Pennsylvania are struggling to get by, and these payments could make a big difference in their lives,” said CWF Director of Partnerships, Graham O’Neill. “We also know there’s a lot of confusion about who qualifies and how to get their checks. This is even harder for people who don’t typically file tax returns, and we are here to help.”
CWF is helping people understand their eligibility to get the payments through their virtual and in-person IRS-certified tax prep programs at CWFphilly.org/stimulus. Anyone who earned more than $12,200 ($24,400 if married) or more than $400 in self-employment income in 2019 is required to file taxes and needs to do so to get their payment.
Economic Impact Payments – commonly referred to as “stimulus checks” or “recovery rebates”– are a key provision of the Coronavirus Aid Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act legislation that Congress passed to help reduce the financial burden of COVID-19 on individuals and their families. The payments are an advance of a temporary tax credit for 2020 (which you file taxes for in 2021).
The full stimulus payment of $1,200 is available to individuals who have no income or earn less than $75,000, or under $150,000 if married filing taxes jointly. Some people with higher earnings may receive a smaller payment. Dependents under age 17 with a social security number or an adoption taxpayer identification number qualify for an additional $500 credit. To receive a payment, each filer must have a social security number and cannot be claimed as a dependent on someone else’s tax return. Married military couples only need one social security number.
The IRS is automatically sending payments to people who already filed taxes for 2018 or 2019; receive Social Security, Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) or Supplemental Security Insurance (SSI); or who are a railroad retiree or Veterans Affairs (VA) beneficiary. During the first month of release, the IRS delivered over 5 million payments worth $8.8 billion in Pennsylvania alone.
People who aren’t required to file taxes and who earned less than $12,200 ($24,400 if married) in 2019 can visit CWFphilly.org/stimulus to complete an online form so the IRS knows where to send their payment.
Going to CWF will also help individuals avoid scams. The IRS refers to this money as an “Economic Impact Payment” and will not contact people by phone, email, text message, or social media to request personal information or a “processing” fee. The IRS will send a written correspondence.
For more information, call 215-982-2217 or visit https://cwfphilly.org/stimulus/.
About Campaign for Working Families
Campaign for Working Families, Inc. (CWF), is a non-profit organization based in Philadelphia. As our name indicates, we are committed to helping working families and individuals achieve economic empowerment by providing free tax preparation, resource building and asset development.
Through the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance Program (VITA), a national initiative sponsored by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), CWF facilitates increased financial stability and asset accumulation for families by connecting them to valuable tax credits, quality financial services, savings options, wealth building resources and public benefits. We operate community-based tax sites offering e-file, direct deposit, public benefits applications and screening to help clients save money. We also offer access to saving products and prepaid debit cards. Our services allow families to maximize federal and state tax credits, including the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC). To learn more about CWF, visit CWFphilly.org.