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New $600 stimulus check for Californians approved: Here's when your money could arrive

California lawmakers approved a new stimulus bill to provide extra money for low-income residents. Here's who is eligible and how fast the new checks will get sent out.

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Some Californians could get an extra $600 stimulus payment.

Sarah Tew/CNET

On Tuesday, California Gov. Gavin Newsom plans to sign into law a $9.6 billion coronavirus relief package, which will bring millions of residents an extra $600 stimulus check, on top of the first and second stimulus check provided by the federal government, as well as the potential third check for up to $1,400 that Congress is working on now.

California's bill -- called the Immediate Action Agreement, a version of the Golden State Stimulus plan Newsom introduced last month -- was approved by state lawmakers on Monday. Along with the stimulus payments, it includes funding for small businesses, and adds resources for child-care services and emergency financial aid for community college students. "As we continue to fight the pandemic and recover, I'm grateful for the Legislature's partnership to provide urgent relief and support for California families and small businesses where it's needed most," Newsom said in a press release last week. 

If you're one of California's 40 million residents, you may be wondering: Am I eligible for an extra $600 payment? When will those checks get sent out? How would my payment arrive? Here's everything we know right now. This story was recently updated. 

I'm a California resident. Will I be eligible to receive a $600 stimulus payment?

The law will send out a total of 5.7 million payments to low-income Californians, according to the release. The following California residents will be eligible for a $600 payment:

  • Those who qualify for the state Earned Income Tax Credit on their 2020 tax returns. Typically, this includes those with annual incomes below $30,000, and some undocumented and mixed-status families. Last year, 3.9 million people applied for the credit.
  • Those with Individual Tax Identification Numbers, or ITINs, as opposed to Social Security numbers, who were excluded from receiving a first federal stimulus check of up to $1,200, or a second federal stimulus check of up to $600. The agreement provides the $600 payments to households with ITINs and income below $75,000. 
  • Households enrolled in the CalWorks public assistance program.
  • Recipients of SSI/SSP.
  • Recipients of Cash Assistance Program for Immigrants, or CAPI.

Another detail: ITIN taxpayers who also qualify for the California Earned Income Tax Credit would receive a total of $1,200. The payments will be provided to these households shortly after they file their 2020 tax returns. (Here's everything new you need to know about this year's taxes.)

When will my $600 stimulus check arrive? And will it be a check, direct deposit or something else?

Once Newsom signs the agreement into law Tuesday, those who are eligible for the $600 payments should get them 45 to 60 days after they receive their state tax refunds, according to the Franchise Tax Board, as reported by the Associated Press. In its press release last week, Newsom's office said the payments for CalWorks households are expected by mid-April, and the timing for the delivery for SSI/SSP and CAPI recipients is still under discussion with federal officials. 

The money should arrive to those eligible automatically, the AP reported, but it did not specify what form the payment would take (for example, the federal stimulus checks arrived via direct depositmailed check or EIP debit card).

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Would this change my eligibility for a third federal stimulus check of up to $1,400? 

California's $600 payments are separate from President Joe Biden's proposed third stimulus check of up to $1,400 per person. Assuming both checks are passed, most of the California recipients of the $600 payment would also likely be eligible for the $1,400 payment as well, if the current proposal to target payments to those under certain income limits and their dependents holds. 

Here's everything we know about the third stimulus check so far, and when the IRS could send it out