Stimulus Checks: Why Some People Received $500 Checks This Week

Some people in the U.S. have started receiving $500 checks as part of the CARES Act. While their arrival happens to come at a time when negotiations around a second stimulus package fell apart, it's actually a leftover payment from the initial round of checks that went out after the CARES Act was signed into law back in March.

On Wednesday, the IRS posted an update to its site, indicating that it was automatically issuing the additional $500 payment to those who had qualifying dependents, as Al.com noted. Some recipients used the non-filers tool on the site sometime before May 17. The tool was put in place to allow people who aren't required to file a tax return to input relevant information to their payments. Anyone who used the tool after May 17 has likely received their full payout, which included a one-time $1,200 check, along with $500 for each dependent 17-years-old or younger.

On Tuesday, senior administration officials have started to concede that a second relief bill likely won't come "anytime soon," and there is little chance that serious negotiations will resume this week. As Politico noted, the unnamed officials claimed that "there are not likely to be any serious talks this week." This news comes in spite of calls from both sides of the aisle, as well as President Donald Trump, for discussions to resume.

Although some of this has to do with the fact that White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows, who was representing the Trump administration in the discussions with Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin, is out for the week. The two were meeting with top-ranking Congressional Democrats House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer. As the talks have stalled, people across the U.S. have generally grown more angry over the inaction.

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Trump had also signed an executive order that was aimed at bypassing Congress to provide certain provisions that had been discussed, including another one-time payment, unemployment insurance, as well as a payroll tax cut. However, the nature of the order has been challenged as unconstitutional on both sides of the aisle.

Schumer himself called the order "hardly worth the paper they're printed on," while Republican Senator Ben Sasse referred to it as "unconstitutional slop." After Trump accused Sasse of "going rogue," the Senator doubled down on his point, tweeting that no president "has unilateral power to re-write immigration law or to cut taxes or to raise taxes." He added that "this is because America doesn't have kings."