SSI Benefits and COVID-19

During this ongoing coronavirus pandemic, many people have asked if their Social Security benefits will be affected in any way. The good news is that if you are already the recipient of Social Security income, then your benefits will continue to arrive as normal. COVID-19 has not had any impact on the amount of money Social Security recipients receive. There are no plans for benefit cuts and no plans for increases at this time. If you have additional questions, reach out to our Nashville social security disability insurance attorneys.

SSI and the government stimulus check

Right now, many people are wondering how they will receive their portion of the money allotted to most Americans through the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES). This Act essentially provides $1,200 for Americans making less than $75,000 a year. Social Security beneficiaries should automatically receive the $1,200 in the same method that they already receive their regular Social Security monthly checks. This can include:

  • direct deposit into your bank account
  • a check in the mail
  • on your Direct Express debit card

There was confusion soon after this law was passed about whether or not Social Security recipients would have to file a tax return in order to receive their portion of the money, but this is not the case.

There are additional steps that Social Security recipients need to take if they also expect to receive payment for a qualifying child. There are various routes that you may need to take if you have a qualifying child, and these are explained in-depth on the SSA website.

If your Social Security payments are received by a representative payee, then your payment will likely be made to the representative payee in the same method that they get your monthly Social Security benefits.

If you want to check on the status of your economic impact payment from the federal government, you can go to the Get My Payment tool provided by the IRS. Using this tool, you will need to provide your Social Security Number or your tax ID number, your date of birth, as well as your street address. This tool will tell you whether or not you are eligible to receive a payment and may give information about when the payment will be sent. However, even those who know they should be receiving stimulus money are often not able to see their payment status by using this tool.

Please note that the Social Security Administration is not taking phone calls related to economic impact payments at this time. They will refer you to the IRS, though it will be incredibly challenging to get through to them on the phone at this time.

The IRS has said that most people will not have to take any additional steps to receive their economic impact payments. This includes most Social Security beneficiaries. Most direct deposit and Direct Express debit card payments will be made by the end of May 2020, though it will take longer for some paper checks to reach people.

Moving forward, there has been discussion of Congress providing additional stimulus money to Americans. Right now, there are several proposals under discussion, but none of them have the approval of both houses of Congress. If a new stimulus package is approved that includes direct payments to Americans, Social Security beneficiaries can expect to receive any additional money in the same way they received money through the CARES Act.