Under the new bipartisan COVID-19 relief bill signed into law, U.S. citizens and green-card holders will be able to receive the latest stimulus check, even if they jointly filed taxes last year with their undocumented spouse.
An estimated 16.7 million people live in mixed immigration-status households, meaning they have a spouse or a dependent who is an undocumented immigrant. None of those households were able to receive the $1,200 stimulus check given by the federal government after the CARES Act was passed in April, unless one of the spouses had served in the U.S. military in 2019.
We are thankful that Congress has finally realized the detriment that the April CARES Act caused for millions of Americans, and have decided to remedy the consequences of their previous inaction.
I am Part of a Mixed-Status Household - Will I Now Receive a Stimulus Check from the Government?
- Yes! Under the latest COVID-19 relief bill, each U.S. citizen and green-card holder will receive $600 in direct relief, even if they filed taxes last year with their undocumented spouse.
- Additionally, mixed-status families will receive $600 per dependent child.
I Didn't Receive the $1,200 Stimulus Check in April - Can I Apply to Receive it Now?
- Under the latest relief bill that Congress passed, mixed-status families with at least one family member with a social security number will retroactively receive up to $1,200 in stimulus checks from the CARES Act, as well as $500 per dependent child.
Will Any Mixed-Status Families Not Receive a Stimulus Check?
- Unfortunately, yes. Under the latest bill, mixed-status families comprised of U.S. citizen or legal resident dependent children and undocumented parents will not receive any relief funds. An estimated 2.2 million children are U.S. citizens or legal residents with undocumented parents.
- If the above paragraph describes your family, we urge you to contact MALDEF (the Mexican American Legal and Educational Defense Fund) by emailing [email protected]
We previously wrote about MALDEF's lawsuit against the government for discriminating against mixed-status families. It is unclear what will happen to this lawsuit, as once mixed-status families retroactively receive the April COVID-relief checks, the lawsuit may be viewed as moot (meaning the issue has been resolved). We believe that if any legal action proceeds on behalf of U.S. citizen children with undocumented parents, it will likely be through MALDEF.
If you are affected by this, you may want to join "Mixed Status Families United," a Facebook group whose members are the covers of many of today's lawsuits fighting against the discrimination in the CARES Act, and working on current resolutions for future relief. You can visit the Facebook group here.
If you are interested in finding out if there may be options to obtain lawful status for your family member please reach out to us at (757) 422-8472, or send us a message on our website. You can also schedule an appointment with one of our immigration attorneys to see if obtaining legal status is possible for your family member by clicking on this link.