comscore Kokua Line: Extra $600 for child hinges on parent’s eligibility | Honolulu Star-Advertiser
Hawaii News | Kokua Line

Kokua Line: Extra $600 for child hinges on parent’s eligibility

Question: I didn’t get the stimulus, and neither did my 12-year-old daughter and we both got it last time. What’s going on?

Answer: Your question and similar ones submitted to Kokua Line reflect a common misconception about the Economic Impact Payment, aka stimulus, when it comes to the money paid for qualifying children age 16 and under.

The $500 in the first round or $600 in the second round for qualifying children was or is paid because the person who claimed the child as a dependent was eligible for a full or partial EIP themselves, according to the IRS.

In other words, if you are not eligible for the stimulus this round — because you make too much money, perhaps — you wouldn’t get the extra money for your daughter, either, even if she meets the other criteria.

As we said, we are getting similar questions from numerous readers. It could be there’s more confusion this round because the individual EIP and the supplement for qualifying children are the same amount: $600. In the first round, those figures were different: $1,200 and $500 respectively.

Other readers who didn’t file tax returns in 2019 have said they registered for the EIP before the November deadline using the nonfiler tool on the IRS website. If they did so correctly, they registered themselves and listed their qualifying children as dependents.

Assuming that they are eligible, those readers could expect a stimulus payment of $600, plus a $600 supplement for each of their qualifying children. Eligible recipients who did not already receive a direct deposit still might receive a check or debit card.

A qualifying child meets the following conditions, according to the IRS:

>> Relationship to the individual who’s eligible for the payment: The child is your son, daughter, stepchild, eligible foster child, brother, sister, stepbrother, stepsister, half brother, half sister or a descendant of any of them (for example, grandchild, niece or nephew).

>> Child’s age: The child was under age 17 on Dec. 31, 2019.

>> Dependent of the individual who’s eligible for the payment: The child was claimed as your dependent on your 2019 tax return or in the Non-Filers: Enter Payment Info Here tool.

>> Citizenship: The child is a U.S. citizen, U.S. national or U.S. resident alien.

>> Residency with person who’s eligible for the payment: The child lived with you for more than half of 2019.

>> Support for child: The child didn’t provide over half of their own support for 2019.

>> Child’s tax return: The child doesn’t file a joint return for the year (or files it only to claim a refund of withheld income tax or estimated tax paid).

In addition, for the supplement to be issued, the child must have a Social Security number valid for employment or an Adoption Taxpayer Identification Number. An Individual Taxpayer Identification Number is not acceptable.

Q: I went to “Get My Payment” and it said “Payment Status #2 — Not Available.” Now what?

A: That message means “you will not receive a second Economic Impact Statement and instead you need to claim the Recovery Rebate Credit on your 2020 tax return,” the IRS said in a statement Tuesday.

Q: When I signed on to my PUA account for the week ending Jan. 2, there was a message saying there was no benefit. Didn’t they extend it?

A: Yes, Pandemic Unemployment Assistance has been extended for 11 weeks beginning with the week ending Jan. 2, but there is a processing delay, according to the state Department of Labor and Industrial Relations.

“The Department is making system changes in order to process the additional weeks. Payments after the week ending Dec. 26, 2020, will be temporarily delayed while the changes are made. Please continue to file your weekly claim certifications as scheduled,” the DLIR says in a notice posted on the PUA website.


Write to Kokua Line at Honolulu Star-Advertiser, 7 Waterfront Plaza, Suite 210, 500 Ala Moana Blvd., Honolulu 96813; call 529-4773; fax 529-4750; or email kokualine@staradvertiser.com.


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