If you made too much money in 2007 to qualify for an economic stimulus check but your income will be lower in 2008, you may be in luck. A little known provision in the economic stimulus law permits rebates based on either your 2007 or 2008 tax return. Most people think the rebates were a one-time deal based only on your 2007 tax return.
If your income was lower in 2008 because you were laid off or you work on commission and simply earned less, you could still qualify for a rebate based on your 2008 return. Also, if you had a baby in 2008, you could be eligible as well. The Treasury Department expects that $10B in rebate credits will be distributed next year. Unlike the 2007 rebates, physical checks will not be issued. Instead, you will claim the rebate credit on your 2008 return.
To refresh your memory, the checks mailed to taxpayers earlier this year were as much as $600 for an individual, and as much as $1,200 for a married couple filing jointly. People with eligible children received up to an additional $300 per child. However, the rebates were phased out for individuals whose income exceeded $75,000 (single) or $150,000 (married).
For more information, check out this recent Wall Street Journal article.
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