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Middle Class Tax Refund payments headed to Californians

In total, about $9.5 billion will be heading to 17 million California households.

SACRAMENTO, Calif. — Middle Class Tax Refund payments are heading to thousands of Californians to help with the growing cost of inflation.

Some families may get up to $1,050 in the coming weeks.

Here are the criteria to qualify for the payments:

  • Filed your 2020 taxes by October 15th of 2021
  • California residents for more than half of the 2020 tax year
  • Not claimed as a dependent
  • Live in California now

Qualifications vary based on income and whether you are claiming dependents.

For example, married and filing jointly or the head of the household need to make less than $500,000 a year. Single or married and filing separately need to make less than $250,000.

Use this calculator to estimate what your payment may be. 

ABC10 spoke with  H.D Palmer, the California Department of Finance Deputy Director of External Affairs, who said the state hopes Californians will use this check for day-to-day expenses that have been hit by inflation.

“In addition to paying for everyday needs like food and gasoline, we hope this will be a situation where it may help people catch up on some of that credit card debt, be able to help them with their rent,” said Palmer.

These payments are not without controversy. Some lawmakers think it’s too much, others think it's too little. One major concern is about pumping more money into the economy potentially raising prices.

“That amount is dwarfed by the amount of assistance the federal government has provided since the beginning of the pandemic, so we really don’t see relatively speaking this amount while critical and important is going to have a significant effect in moving inflation up,” said Palmer.

In total, about $9.5 billion will be heading to 17 million California households.

Tax filers who used direct deposit on their tax refund may see the payment in their account while others would get a debit card with the funds. 

Payments are going out between October 2022 and January 2023.

Watch more from ABC10: PG&E customers report soaring prices after record breaking heatwave

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