According to a report released last week by the Government Accountability Office, over a million stimulus payments were sent out to deceased US citizens, for a total of roughly $1.4 billion in wasted funds.
In March, Congress passed a massive $2 trillion stimulus package, a portion of which was sent as a one-time payment to US taxpayers, to help manage the economic impacts of the coronavirus pandemic. The payments were rushed, and as a result, large sums of money was sent out to people who were not available to receive it.
According to the report, the stimulus payments were sent out without cross-referencing the names of the recipients with Social Security Administration death records. Initially, families of the deceased recipients hoped that they would be able to keep the payments, but in May, the IRS updated its guidance to say that dead people do not qualify for the coronavirus relief payments and that the money “should be returned to the IRS.”
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However, the report also said that the IRS does not currently have a plan in place to contact the families of these people and ask for the money back.
According to the Washington Post, there are still many Americans who are eligible for the payment but still haven’t received it yet, and while there are a few basic reasons this can happen, there are many people who have no idea why they haven’t seen the money yet.
There is a possibility that Americans could see one more stimulus check in the coming months, with millions of people across the country still out of work. Last week, President Donald Trump promised that another round of “very generous” stimulus payments would be coming soon, but few details are available about the exact amount or timeframe of when the money will actually be sent out.