Taxpayer asks:

I heard that people that has never been employed or work could still get the stimulus check is that true? 

Taxgirl says:

Yes. There is no requirement that you currently be employed or earning money to qualify for a stimulus check.

Some non-filers might have overlooked registration because of confusion related to an early version of the CARES Act. In the March version initially proposed in the Senate, taxpayers needed to be working or receiving Social Security or pension income to qualify for a check. However, the final version of the CARES Act – the one that is now law – does not require earned income, nor the filing of a tax return to qualify for a check.

Eligible taxpayers who filed tax returns for 2019 or 2018 will receive payments automatically. Automatic payments will also be sent to those receiving Social Security retirement, survivor or disability benefits (SSDI), Railroad Retirement benefits, as well as Supplemental Security Income (SSI), and Veterans Affairs beneficiaries who didn’t file a tax return in the last two years.

But what about folks with little to no income who aren’t usually required to file a tax return? The IRS encourages those folks to register soon to get a payment. The Non-Filers tool will remain available through the summer and fall. However, to receive your payment by the end of the year, you must register by October 15, 

Keep in mind that the Non-Filer tool is only for those who do not have a tax filing obligation. If you’re simply looking for information, use Get My Payment to check on your payment status.

Before you go: be sure to read my disclaimer. Remember, I’m a lawyer and we love disclaimers.
If you have a question, here’s how to Ask The Taxgirl.

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Kelly Phillips Erb is a tax attorney, tax writer, and podcaster.


  1. Please tell us if the STIMULUS Checks received this year MUST be reported as INCOME on our 2020 Tax Return.??

    And THANK YOU for all the information shared to help us make better decisions and plans.

    • No, it is NOT income. You may need to report it to make sure that you got enough (folks who are still owed money can claim it on their 2020 returns) but it is NOT taxable.

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