March 6, 2021

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How to calculate your $1,400 stimulus check total, if the latest proposal holds – CNET

4 min read

You can calculate how much money you and your household would get with a $1,400 stimulus check maximum.

Sarah Tew/CNET

Passing the $1.9 trillion relief proposal is priority No. 1 for top Democrats, who are now operating under a tight timeline to get a third stimulus check for individuals and families approved and delivered to roughly 160 million people. While some of the specifics will look familiar from earlier stimulus bills, the guidelines to qualify for the new $1,400 check will change enough to affect every payment, starting with the size of that payment.

The newest proposed eligibility requirements have shifted significantly — from citizenship and dependents to individual and family income caps — so if you’re trying to calculate how much you could expect to receive with the payment, we can help. While Congress has not agreed to every detail yet, Democrats plan to approve the bill within weeks, using a political power move. That means now’s a good time to start sketching out an idea of your share.

To help you quickly estimate your total, we’ve updated our stimulus check calculator based on the most recent proposal (PDF). Here’s more information on how you could potentially get a significantly larger third stimulus check, as well as how it’s possible to get less money or even nothing. We also illustrate how a shift in the stimulus formula could affect your total share. And here’s how a third check during tax time could play out. This story has been updated with new information.

Use this stimulus check calculator for a ‘targeted’ $1,400 payment

Under the latest House plan (PDF), some qualifications used for the first two checks — including much money you and family can earn a year to get the full $1,400 — will look familiar. Other qualifications will be new, however, such as a hard cap to receive any money at all. Our calculator tool will give you an idea of the amount you can expect. The stimulus calculator won’t store or use your data. Note that our calculations are based on the most-recent House proposal and could change again before becoming law.

Proposed $1,400 stimulus calculator

Use details from your 2020 or 2021 tax return

1. Choose your filing status below.

Here’s who would get the full amount under this House proposal, based on your AGI, and when would you completely phase out of a payment. As an individual or couple’s income goes up, the size of the partial payment would get smaller. 

Stimulus check proposal for income limits

Full $1,400 per person maximum (based on AGI) Not eligible (based on AGI)
Individual taxpayer Less than $75,000 $100,000 or more
Head of household Less than $112,500 $150,000 or more
Married couple filing jointly Less than $150,000 $200,000 or more

How eligibility rule changes may affect stimulus calculations

New with President Joe Biden’s proposal, all dependents would qualify for a $1,400 payment. Also new: The upper income limit is a hard cap. Above the income ceiling you no longer qualify for any money, including for dependents. With the first two checks, you could hit the cap and still receive money for a dependent.

Expanding qualifications to dependents of any age would make approximately 13.5 million more adult dependents able to count toward the household total, according to The People’s Policy Project. Biden’s proposal also looks to include families with mixed citizenship status; that is, where at least one family member is a US citizen.

Now playing: Watch this: Stimulus check No. 3: What you need to know


$1,400 checks vs. the $600 second check: Maximums compared

Going from $600 in the second check to $1,400 in the third — either with a higher or lower cap on income — is a big leap any way you look at it. So, we wanted to highlight just what a difference the approaches could make with the chart below. Note that the first two columns use the same formula, which makes it easier to compare apples with apples, and the third uses the one reportedly under discussion, with the lower cap but more money for dependents ($1,400).

All figures could change in a final stimulus bill and represent the highest amount a household could get, but remember that just like with the first and second payments, there will be reasons some people may not get the full amount

Maximum for $600 vs. $1,400 stimulus checks

$600 stimulus check ($600 per child age 16 or under) $1,400 stimulus check ($600 for dependents of any age) $1,400 stimulus check ($1,400 for dependents of any age)
Individual taxpayer, 0 dependents $600 maximum $1,400 maximum $1,400 maximum
Head of household, 1 dependent $1,200 maximum $2,000 maximum $2,800 maximum
Head of household, 2 dependents $1,800 maximum $2,600 maximum $4,200 maximum
Head of household, 3 dependents $2,400 maximum $3,200 maximum $5,600 maximum
Married couple, 0 dependents $1,200 maximum $2,800 maximum $2,800 maximum
Married couple, 1 dependent $1,800 maximum $3,400 maximum $4,200 maximum
Married couple, 2 dependents $2,400 maximum $4,000 maximum $5,600 maximum
Married couple, 3 dependents $3,000 maximum $4,600 maximum $7,000 maximum

For more information on stimulus checks, here’s how to report missing stimulus money to the IRS, what to do if you’re missing any stimulus money and all the important things you need to know about stimulus checks and your taxes.


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