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Action Needed for Economic Stimulus Payments
March 28, 2008

Economic stimulus payments will be sent in May to millions of people in the US. In order to receive payments, taxpayers must have a valid Social Security number, at least $3,000 of income, and file a 2007 federal income tax return. The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) will process the payments with this information. Many individuals who would not normally file a tax return must do so this year in order to receive the economic stimulus payment. On Super Saturday, March 29, hundreds of IRS offices nationwide will provide assistance with Form 1040A for persons who are filing a tax return only to receive the payment. A list of Pennsylvania sites is available at www.irs.gov/individuals/article/0,,id=180612,00.html. A list of information needed to enable assistance is available at www.irs.gov/newsroom/article/0,,id=180741,00.html. Social Security, certain veterans' benefits, and Railroad Retirement benefits count towards the qualifying income requirement of $3,000. Supplemental Security Income (SSI) does not count as qualifying income for the stimulus payment. Persons with low income who file only to receive the economic stimulus payment may qualify for Free File – Economic Stimulus Payment (www.irs.gov/efile/lists/0,,id=179739,00.html). More information for recipients of Social Security, veterans’, or Railroad Retirement benefits, for low-wage workers and for military combat personnel is available through links on the Economic Stimulus Payments Information Center (www.irs.gov/newsroom/article/0,,id=177937,00.html).

Free tax preparation assistance is also available to persons with low or moderate income through the Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) program. Call 800-906-9887 to locate the nearest VITA site. The Tax Counseling for the Elderly (TCE) Program provides free tax help to people age 60 and older. As part of the IRS-sponsored TCE Program, AARP offers the Tax-Aide counseling program at many locations during the filing season. To find an AARP Tax Aide site call 888-227-7669 or visit the AARP web site (https://locator.aarp.org/vmis/sites/tax_aide_locator.jsp).

The IRS has information available to assist organizations to outreach to individuals who may be eligible but would not normally file a tax return on its Marketing Products for Partners web page (www.irs.gov/newsroom/article/0,,id=179735,00.html), including one-page flyers, a guide for benefit recipients, and public service announcements. The IRS has encouraged charities, churches, governmental organizations, and others to assist them in reaching those who might otherwise be unaware of their eligibility and the need to file a tax return. Contact Betty Simmonds at PCPA with questions.

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