How to Enter Stimulus Check on Tax Return

The stimulus check, officially known as the Economic Impact Payment, is provided by the government to help individuals and families during times of economic crisis. If you have received a stimulus check, it’s important to know how to properly report it on your tax return. Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to do so:

1. Determine if your stimulus check is taxable: The stimulus check is not considered taxable income, so you won’t owe any taxes on it. Additionally, it won’t affect your eligibility for other government benefits.

2. Gather your tax documents: Before starting your tax return, gather all the necessary documents, including your W-2s, 1099s, and any other income-related forms. You’ll need these to accurately report your income.

3. Choose the correct tax form: Depending on your financial situation, you’ll need to choose the appropriate tax form. Most individuals will use Form 1040 or 1040-SR, but if you have a more complex situation, you may need to use other forms.

4. Report your income: On the tax form, report your income as usual, including any wages, self-employment income, or other taxable income you received throughout the year. The stimulus check should not be included in this section.

5. Locate the Recovery Rebate Credit: Look for the Recovery Rebate Credit section on your tax form. This credit allows you to claim any missing stimulus payments or correct any errors from previous stimulus payments.

6. Enter your stimulus payment amount: In the appropriate line of the Recovery Rebate Credit section, enter the amount of your stimulus payment. The amount can be found on the letter or notice you received from the IRS confirming your payment.

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7. Calculate your Recovery Rebate Credit: Once you’ve entered your stimulus payment amount, the tax software or tax preparer will calculate your Recovery Rebate Credit for you. This credit will either reduce the amount of tax you owe or increase your tax refund.

8. Review and file your tax return: Review your tax return for accuracy and completeness. Make sure all the information is correct and that you’ve properly reported your stimulus payment. Once you’re confident everything is accurate, file your tax return.


1. Will receiving a stimulus check affect my tax refund or tax owed?
No, receiving a stimulus check won’t affect the amount of tax refund you’re entitled to or the tax amount you owe.

2. Do I have to pay taxes on my stimulus payment?
No, the stimulus payment is not taxable income, so you don’t need to include it as part of your taxable income when filing your tax return.

3. What if I never received my stimulus payment?
If you never received your stimulus payment or received an incorrect amount, you can claim the missing amount as a Recovery Rebate Credit on your tax return.

4. Can I claim the Recovery Rebate Credit if I didn’t receive a stimulus payment?
Yes, if you were eligible for a stimulus payment but didn’t receive one, you can claim the Recovery Rebate Credit on your tax return.

5. Is there an income limit to be eligible for the stimulus payment?
Yes, there are income limits to be eligible for the stimulus payment. Individuals with an adjusted gross income (AGI) of up to $75,000 and married couples filing jointly with an AGI of up to $150,000 are eligible for the full payment. The payment amount gradually decreases for higher income levels.

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6. Can I claim the Recovery Rebate Credit if I’m a non-resident alien?
No, non-resident aliens are not eligible for the stimulus payment or the Recovery Rebate Credit.

7. What if my income changed in 2020 and I’m no longer eligible for the stimulus payment?
If your income changed in 2020 and you’re no longer eligible for the stimulus payment based on your 2019 tax return, you won’t have to repay the stimulus payment you already received.

8. What if I made a mistake on my tax return and claimed the wrong amount for the stimulus payment?
If you made a mistake on your tax return and claimed the wrong amount for the stimulus payment, the IRS may correct it and adjust your tax refund or tax owed accordingly. It’s important to review your tax return for accuracy before filing to avoid any errors.

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