(NEXSTAR) – In less than two weeks, California plans to begin issuing the Middle Class Tax Refund directly to residents’ bank accounts and mailboxes. The first batch of direct payments, also called inflation relief checks, is set to go out on Oct. 7, the Franchise Tax Board said.
Since the plan to send millions of Californians payments up to $1,050 was announced months ago, the state agency has been fielding questions from eager residents who could really use the extra money. But the FTB says if you’ve met all the requirements, the best thing to do is just wait.
“MCTR payments cannot be accelerated by contacting FTB,” the agency told Nexstar. “Californians who meet all eligibility criteria do not need to do anything to receive their payments.”
In general, you have to be a California resident, have filed your 2020 taxes on time in California, and fall under the income limits in order to qualify. (The exact requirements are outlined here.) In 2020, you must have earned less than $250,001 in adjusted gross income as an individual tax filer, or $500,001 as a couple filing jointly, to qualify for the inflation relief checks.
The more money you made in 2020, the smaller your inflation relief payment will be. (You can calculate the amount you’ll get here.)
Even if your situation has changed substantially since 2020, and you make less money than you did back then, your payment will still be based on your income from two years ago, the FTB said. That’s required by the law passed creating the tax rebate, and contacting the FTB won’t change anything, the agency said.
If you don’t see a direct deposit hit your bank account on Oct. 7, don’t panic. The payments are going to be issued in waves.
The first group of people to get the Middle Class Tax Refund will be for Californians who got the Golden State Stimulus payments (either the first or second round) via direct deposit. Those payments will be issued to bank accounts between Oct. 7 and Oct. 25, the Franchise Tax Board said.
The rest of the direct deposits will be sent out between Oct. 28 and Nov. 14.
People who aren’t set up for direct deposit will get a debit card sent to their address. Debit cards will be mailed between Oct. 25 and Dec. 10 for Californians who got Golden State Stimulus payments by debit card last year. The remaining debit cards will go out by Jan. 15, 2023.