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Financial News

California relief checks: Who will receive them in February and when?

California is wrapping up the sending payments for the Middle-Class Tax Refund. Who will receive their payment in February?

California prepares final inflation relief payments
MediaNews Group/Orange County Register via Getty ImagesGetty

The Golden State plans to distribute one final batch of payments for the Middle-Class Tax Refund that will be sent between 30 January and 14 February.

The state began making payments in late October, and to date, 7.1 have been made through direct deposit, with an additional 9.4 million pre-paid debit cards being sent through the mail. The California Franchise Tax Board (CFTB) estimates that more than thirty-one million residents have benefited from the tax credit and that the program cost the state just over $9 billion.

Be sure to cash out your debit card to avoid theft

The state advises that those who receive a pre-paid card cash it out as soon as possible to avoid theft by scammers. No details on the amount scammers have been able to steal since October, but it is becoming increasingly clear that the threat of theft is real.

ABC 7 spoke with various victims, many of whom saw their entire balance, which reached $700 for some, wiped from their pre-paid cards within days of activation.

Who will receive their payment in February?

The last group to receive their Middle-Class Tax Refund will be those “whose address has changed since filing their 2020 tax return.” This batch will be sent as debit cards to these new addresses. With this being the last send planned by the tax authority, all those eligible should have received their payment by the end of February.

How do I contact the California Franchise Tax Board?

If you believe you were eligible to receive a check and didn’t, you can contact the CFTB through various means. Support staff are available to speak in several languages besides English, including Spanish, Mandarin, Hindi, Vietnamese, Korean, and Punjabi.


You can chat with a representative through their website on weekdays between 8 AM and 5 PM PT.


If you would rather speak to someone directly, call 800-542-9332, where you can be attended Monday through Friday between 8 AM and 5 PM PT.

If you have questions about the debit cards, including issues with activation or the card being lost or stolen, call 800-240-0223 on weekdays between 8 AM and 10 PM. This is the same number used to activate the debit card, which can be done outside these business hours as well.


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