When Is the Second Stimulus Check Coming Out? Payments Imminent as Donald Trump Signs Bill

After President Donald Trump caved to the mounting backlash and signed off another COVID-19 relief bill despite his opposition to it, $600 stimulus check payments are shortly due to be sent out to millions of people across the nation.

The bipartisan package was passed by Congress early last week and Trump eventually signed it into law on Sunday. He had criticized the legislation, demanding $2,000 stimulus payments and for other measures, such as foreign aid, to be cut out.

Lawmakers are due to hold a vote on the higher-value stimulus checks, which Republicans in Congress had previously blocked after Trump had expressed support for a $2,000 per individual amount.

Under the now signed legislation, those eligible for payments are due to receive up to $600 per individual, half of the maximum for adults under the first stimulus check in the spring.

Below, Newsweek looks at when the payments might arrive.

When Will Checks Arrive?

Due to processes already being in place, it is expected payments could be issued quicker this time out.

The relief legislation gives the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) a January 15 deadline to send out payments.

Those whose payments are not sent by that deadline will have to claim their funds when filing their tax returns next year, through the Recovery Rebate Credit.

According to Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin, speaking Monday, December 21, payments could start being received within a week of Trump's signature on the bill.

Commenting when the bill was initially expected to be signed off, he said on CNBC people would start receiving money at the start of the following week.

Chad Hooper, national president of the Professional Managers Association (PMA), which represents managers at the IRS, told Newsweek earlier this year he believes a second round of payments could be sent quicker than the first. He said the agency "could get out all of the payments more rapidly."

How Long Did it Take Last Time?

The Internal Revenue Service distributed 81 million payments through electronic bank transfers within two weeks of the CARES Act being enacted around the end of March, according to a Government Accountability Office (GAO) report.

Those whose details were not on file for direct electronic payments generally saw a longer wait to receive their funds.

The GAO report stated that as of May 31, 160.4 million payments had been distributed.

Newsweek has contacted the Treasury and the IRS for comment on the timescale for the distribution of direct payments.

woman on subway in covid mask
A woman wearing a face shield and a mask rides the uptown subway December 23, 2020 in New York City. The COVID-19 crisis has posed economic turmoil, with a further relief package having been signed to help those impacted. Robert Nickelsberg/Getty Images