Tax Guide

Stimulus Checks Will Be Available for Mixed-Status Immigrant Taxpayers Retroactively

Stimulus Checks Will Be Available for Mixed-Status Immigrant Taxpayers Retroactively
Ines Zemelman, EA
29 December 2020

Mixed-status filers now eligible for stimulus payments

If one taxpayer with a social security number filed jointly with a taxpayer who did not have a social security number -- they were both excluded from the first COVID-19 stimulus payment.

On Sunday, Dec 27, President Trump signed a 2.3 Trillion dollar relief bill which includes a second direct cash payment taxpayers of $600 per adult and child.

But there’s a very important update the stimulus checks will now allow mixed-status families to receive stimulus checks.

In addition, this change is expected to be retroactive, allowing those who did not avail of the stimulus in 2020 to receive it while filing their tax return in 2021 (for 2020).  If you want to read more information about stimulus checks, we’ve got all the questions covered in our Federal Stimulus FAQ article.

Taxpayers excluded from prior stimulus now eligible retroactively

Although the joint-filing taxpayer without a social security number is not expected to get a stimulus check (to be eligible for payments, the taxpayer, amongst other requirements outlined in our FAQ, must have a social security number), filing jointly with a non-resident now allows you from receiving a stimulus check of $600 with your 2020 tax return. If the couple has children, there’s also supposed to be a $600 payment per each qualifying child.

Importantly - this update is expected to be retroactive — people who were excluded in the first stimulus round should be able to claim the stimulus payment ($2,400 per couple filing jointly and $500 per dependent child) when they file their 2020 tax return. Previously, they were ineligible.

Undocumented immigrants without social security numbers ineligible for stimulus

Unfortunately, undocumented immigrants and other non-citizens without  Social Security numbers (SSN) who file individual tax returns are not eligible for receiving the stimulus checks. If a child is a US citizen but a parent doesn't have a Social Security number (SSN) the child will also not be eligible for the check.

Ines Zemelman, EA
founder of Taxes for Expats