Mixed-status families qualify for the third stimulus check. Here's what that means
The new stimulus law includes mixed-status families who missed out on the first two stimulus checks.
Clifford ColbyManaging Editor
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With the $1.9 trillion stimulus bill signed into law by President Joe Biden on Thursday, the third stimulus checks of up to $1,400 per person will be out the door and on their way to millions as soon as this weekend. This time, the stimulus package includes families who are in a mixed-status household, which many were left out of the first two rounds of checks.
The move to qualify mixed-status families for the new stimulus check opens the door for millions more to receive a payment. The National Immigration Forum estimates that 16.2 million people in the US live in mixed-status families.
We'll help you understand the eligibility requirements for households where at least one person isn't a US citizen. We'll also explain the IRS definition, which families did and didn't qualify for the first two payments and how qualifications have changed with the third stimulus check. Here's how to track your payment and what we know about setting up direct deposit for your check. This story was recently updated.
What a mixed-status family means for stimulus payments
The federal government categorizes families whose members have different citizenship and immigration classifications as "mixed status." Note that for a mixed-status family to qualify for stimulus money, one member needs to have a Social Security number. A household where every family member is a resident or nonresident alien with an ITIN, or Individual Taxpayer Identification Number, instead of a Social Security number wouldn't meet this requirement.
Here are some examples of mixed-status families that would qualify for a stimulus check, where at least one household member has a Social Security number:
One spouse is a US citizen with a Social Security number and the other spouse isn't a citizen and doesn't have a Social Security number.
One spouse is a "lawful permanent resident" with a Social Security number and the other isn't a citizen and doesn't have a Social Security number.
Neither parent is a US citizen or "lawful permanent resident" with a Social Security number, and a child is a US-born citizen with a Social Security number.
With the second check, Congress opened up the requirements (PDF) to married couples filing jointly where one spouse has a Social Security number and the other spouse doesn't. A couple in a mixed-status household filing jointly would be eligible for a second payment of $600, as would each eligible dependent with a Social Security number. If the couple file separately, only the spouse who has a Social Security number would be eligible.