The IRS wants more retirees and veterans to file for stimulus payments -- and so does Ohio

Sue Daugherty
Mar 23, 2010

 

Are you a retiree and receiving Social Security/Railroad Retirement or Veterans benefits and afraid to apply for the Economic Stimulus Payment? The Economic Stimulus Payment is a payment that puts up to $600 in the hands of those who have done one of two things -- they filed a tax return for 2007 or they filed a 1040A form.

According to the IRS Web site, there are 5.2 million retirees and veterans who are eligible to receive the Economic Stimulus Payment, but haven't filed the necessary paperwork to get it. In trying to get older people to apply for the stimulus payment, the IRS posted an announcement entitled, "IRS Launches Summer Push to Reach Retirees and Disabled Veterans Who Have Yet to File for Their Economic Stimulus Payments."(IRS)

In my work running Serving Our Seniors, a geriatric social service agency, we have found that some retirees have fears about filing. They are afraid this additional income will make them ineligible for some of the benefits they are receiving from Social Security, Railroad Retirement or the Veterans Administration. Another fear is if they get this money today, they will be taxed for it and be required to come up with cash to pay this tax in 2009. And finally, applying for the stimulus payment will trigger them to be audited in the future.

In response to these concerns, here is what I was able to find on IRS and State of Ohio:

* Receiving the stimulus payment should have no impact on other federal benefits. The stimulus payment is not taxable. Absent any other filing requirements, filing a tax return to receive a stimulus payment does not mean that retirees will have to start filing tax returns again. (IRS)

* A special stimulus category includes recipients of certain benefits from Social Security and Veterans Affairs who do not normally have a requirement to file a tax return. These individuals, however, must file a tax return before Oct. 15 to receive their economic stimulus payments. (IRS)

* People not otherwise required to file an income tax return should file 1040A form with basic information to ensure they receive the economic stimulus payment. This information includes name, address, dependents, if any, amount of qualifying income (which must be $3,000 or more,) direct deposit information and signatures. (IRS)

Serving Our Seniors has copies of the 1040 A form. If you are an Erie County resident, age 60 or older and would like help from Serving Our Seniors in completing the 1040A, ask for an appointment with our office by calling 419-624-1856 or 800-564-1856. The 1040A is quick and easy, and our help is free.

* The stimulus payment will not reduce the amount of other benefit payments. It is also not considered taxable income for either federal or state purposes. (Governor Urges Seniors, Veterans to Apply for Stimulus Payments, State of Ohio)

The one fear that I could not put to rest, based on the information contained in this IRS announcement, is whether applying for the Economic Stimulus Payment will trigger an audit on me in the future. I could not find an answer to this question.

If you haven't filed for this payment, you might want consider doing so. And when you get this money, I suggest squirreling it away for the winter heating season's fuel bills.

Comments

Anonymous

Don't worry honey, most seniors know about handouts.

Anonymous

Since when did Sue Daugherty become part of the SR? Since Westerhold and Nuesse? Save it, no one wants to hear you after the stunts you pulled with them. You have lost alot of respect you once had. Sad.

Anonymous

Most seniors know about handouts? Hey Jimmy, better start saving yer nest egg now. Wait 'till you get on a fixed income and the cost of EVERYTHING goes up except your income. Oh, we could get a job, but some of us can't work anymore. Besides we paid into SS and EARNED the right to our monthly checks! You've got a lot to learn about life!

Anonymous

All my people have know is struggle & job loss - you people had a much better life than my children or will ever see. Lucky you. Besides I pay in to SSI - it is broke. NO MORE HANDOUTS FOR YOU!

Anonymous

I'm 45 old fogey; think I'll get the S.security I paid into to? Doubt it.

Anonymous

Fixed income? Sure like to with you Gramps. You got children or grandchildren working? If so ask them how things go for them. Stagnate wages, do more on the job & GET PAID THE SAME. Y eah it would be nice to be fixed like my uncles who retired from Ford or the Railroad. They have it tuff there oldster.

Anonymous

I SEE THE MURRAT IS POSTING HIS CAMPAIGN SIGNS AROUND TOWN. REMEMBER PEOPLE HOW HE IS RUNNING THE CITY, AS I'M SURE YOU WOULDN'T WANT THE MURRAT AS YOUR STATE REPRESENTIVE. BETTER VOTE ENDERLE.

Anonymous

HEY JIMMY "Sure like to with you Gramps" Sey whut? That doesn't make any sense. What I find disturbing is the hatred and animosity you and others have for your elders. Sorry to say, but you'll be there very quickly. Mark my words -- you'll blink your eyes one day an wonder what happened to the last 50 years.

Anonymous

Yeah I messed up; should read "sure like to be there with you." You know my uncles are retired and they tell me that they also worry for the future of younger people. Back in the day things were better for those in the workplace, (50's,60's,70's). We all know that those days are long gone & America is broke. Hey gramps my oldest grandchild is 7, I'm past 50. So we both know it was easier then. Don't try to fool people. Study the past and look at today ; you had a walk in the park.

Anonymous

I hope old folks quite driving, they are terrible!

Anonymous

Instead of stimulus payments, lower everyone's taxes and cut out the middleman of government.

Anonymous

BOB learn to spell it is QUIT not quite, so eager to slam someone and you come out looking stupid

Bob

trooperden: your soe tuff.

Anonymous

Does this blog simply exist to give SOS the opporunity to allow the elderly (aka predator class) to bilk more money out of the younger generation. Again, if Sue is so worried about these freeloaders freezing in their houses this winter, they should save copies of the SR to burn for heat.

Anonymous

I am 23 and a veteran that is married and the this stimulus BS gave my wife and I a whopping $400. So much for $600 per person.

Anonymous

Most get 48% taken from their vacation checks. It is a luxury tax. You oldsters never had that. We pay for SSI,that we will never realize. Thanks a lot greedy old people.

Anonymous

It's not old people who are greedy. Try the drug dealers and other low lifes that pop out 6 kids, and then get shot or whatever. Their kids get SSI. Or the drunk who can't go long enough without a drink to go to work. They get SSI. How about the big fat guy? He can't go to work, but he can use his food stamps to but CANDY! Somehow candy is covered on food stamps! He gets SSI! Most of the previous examples are of people under the age of 50. How many years do you suppose they contributed? Leave the old people alone, and look at others.