On March 27, President Donald Trump signed a bipartisan $2 trillion coronavirus economic relief plan to aid American households affected by the pandemic, the largest stimulus package in American history, according to “Business Insider.”
The plan includes stimulus payments to individuals. However, anyone who is claimed as a dependent can not receive a check, even if they are over the age of 18 and a college student, according to “The New York Times.” With households with qualifying children age 16 or under, the payment will include an additional $500 per child.
Some University of Connecticut students are not pleased that they are excluded from getting their own payment and their families will not get the additional dependent bonus. Mason Vandenberg, a sixth-semester business major, said that it is “ridiculous” that college students who are listed as dependents are not qualified.
“It’s absolutely ridiculous, the fact that this stimulus bill is supposed to help the most vulnerable Americans, yet excludes college students who are still dependent on taxes but still pay their own bills and are on their own, is insane,” Vandenberg said. “The worst part is that even if you are listed as a dependent, you don’t get the $1,200 and your family doesn’t get the $500 for having a dependent because you are over the age of 18. Both ways would help financially, yet I am [excluded] from both.”
“The New York Times” said students who are under the age of 24 are viewed as dependents “in the eyes of the taxing authorities if a parent pays for at least half of their expenses.”
Joela Shurdho, a sixth-semester chemistry and secondary science education double major, said it is wrong to assume every college student who is listed as a dependent would not benefit from receiving an assistance check.
“I think it’s a gray area, if you’re a college student and your parents pay for most of your expenses including tuition, it’s hard to justify receiving an assistance check,” Shurdho said. “I think what [the government is] assuming is everyone not receiving a check has other forms of financial support, which isn’t always the case.”
Shurdho said everyone’s economic situation is unique and in the current times, an assistance check could help.
“That being said it’s extremely subjective because every situation is different and people want money in a time like this,” Shurdho said.
For adults who are not listed as dependents, the average check will be $1,200 but it will depend on the individual’s income, according to “The New York Times.” There is currently going to be one payment, but future bills may add additional payments.
Chrystal Charles, a sixth-semester psychology major, said that even though college students who are listed as dependents may not need the money themselves, it could help their families who are now providing for them while they are not at school.
“It’s not fair at all because it excludes many students who could really use that money to help their family, their academic career or even their own bills and stuff,” Charles said.
Rachel Philipson is a staff writer for The Daily Campus. She can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.