No, you don’t have to be a US citizen living in America to get a second stimulus check
If you’re a non-US citizen who lives and works in America, a US citizen who lives abroad or a resident of a US territory, you may have some questions about whether or not you’re eligible for a second stimulus check of up to $600, now that President Donald Trump signed a new COVID relief bill into law. You might also still be wondering if you were supposed to get a check in the first round of payments last year but never did.
The second stimulus check changes some of the rules around who qualifies to get one, depending on your immigration status in the US, where you live outside the US and your tax filings. We’ll break down the changes and rules and explain how to claim a missing payment for yourself or your children.
CNET has guides for everything you need to know about stimulus checks if you’re on SSDI, if you’re an older adult, if you have dependents, if you’re a young adult or if you are paying or receiving child support. We also have a stimulus calculator tool that can make sense of the IRS’ formula to determine your second stimulus check payment.
Do you have to be a US citizen to receive a stimulus check?
Not necessarily. Under the March CARES Act, all US citizens and non-US citizens with a Social Security number who live and work in America were eligible to receive stimulus payments. That includes people who the IRS refer to as “resident aliens,” green card holders, and workers using visas such as H-1B and H-2A. This rule is the same in the new law as well.
If your citizenship status changed since you first got a social security number, you may have to update the IRS’s records to get your check through its online nonfilers tool. US citizens living abroad were also eligible for a first payment (more below).
Who does the IRS count as a US citizen?
The IRS considers all people born in the US as a US citizen, regardless of the tax or immigration status of a person’s parents. A person born outside of the US may also be a US citizen at birth if at least one parent is a US citizen and has lived in the US for a period of time.
The IRS also considers you a US citizen if you are over the age of 18 and went through a naturalization process, which typically involves living in the US for three to five years, filling out an application, going to an interview and passing a citizenship test. You’ll need a Certificate of Naturalization or Certificate of Citizenship to prove your citizenship and get a Social Security number to be eligible for a stimulus check…Read more>>