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Updated: July 19, 2022

$850 relief checks have been sent to nearly all eligible Mainers, state says

File photo A total of 784,028 payments have been sent to Maine taxpayers, representing 91% of estimated recipients.

Despite initial concerns about an envelope shortage, $850 relief checks have been sent to hundreds of thousands of eligible Mainers, the state's Department of Administrative and Financial Services said Monday.

The relief program, which draws on Maine's budget surplus, is intended to help individual taxpayers cope with the costs of rising inflation.

The DAFS said it has sent a total of 784,028 payments, representing 91% of 858,000 estimated recipients.

The DAFS revenue division will continue to process checks weekly as Maine taxpayers continue to file their tax returns. The final deadline to file is Oct. 31. 

“Knowing how much Maine people needed the relief, Governor Mills directed the Department to get these checks into the hands of Maine people as quickly as possible — and we got it done, delivering the money within 90 days to all the taxpayers who had filed their returns,” said the department's commissioner, Kirsten Figueroa.

“We are proud to have delivered this critical relief, and now we will shift gears to work with community partners to spread the word to ensure that all Maine people — especially Maine seniors — who may be eligible for the relief receive it.” 

Mills proposed, and the Legislature overwhelmingly approved, the relief payments as part of the supplemental budget the governor signed into law earlier this year. 

More than half of the state's budget surplus, $729.3 million, is being returned to taxpayers in the form of one-time, $850 checks to eligible taxpayers. The average Maine family received $1,700 in relief.  

The DAFS said it is working with community partners to promote the relief payments and other tax benefits to reach those who may not know about them or know that a 2021 Maine state tax return is required to receive them.  

For the purposes of claiming the $850, a Maine person who is typically a non-filer can follow the same process they use to claim the Property Tax and Sales Tax Fairness credits, a process that doesn’t require filing a federal return.  

More information

Mainers who are eligible and have not received their relief checks by the start of August can check on the status of their payment here.

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