Politics & Policy

Foreign Workers Receive Stimulus Checks Due to Glitch: Report

(Mohamed Abd El Ghany/Reuters)

Some foreign workers who lived in the U.S. at some point during the last two years have mistakenly received economic stimulus checks designated for U.S. citizens due to an Internal Revenue Service glitch.

Thousands of college-age workers, some of whom left the U.S. before the coronavirus was discovered in the country and are currently residing abroad, received an unexpected $1,200 payment from the IRS to their bank accounts in recent weeks, Politico reported.

The stimulus payments, part of the massive $2 trillion economic relief package passed by Congress last month, are earmarked for U.S. citizens, making the foreign workers ineligible for them. However, due to an error in the IRS tax filing system, payments were doled out to citizens of other countries who recently worked in the U.S.

The error is thought to have arisen from a tax-filing mistake commonly made by non-citizen workers studying at universities or on temporary work visas. Such workers often file using TurboTax or a similar online filing service meant for U.S. residents, causing the IRS to count them as U.S. citizens.

Now, the workers who received a stimulus deposit say they are unsure how to return it.

A majority of Americans have received their stimulus checks since the IRS began distributing them earlier this month, but millions are still waiting for their checks to arrive. Those for whom the federal government does not have bank-account direct-deposit information must wait for a physical check in the mail or can submit their information through the online tool the IRS has provided, although the system has been plagued with glitches.

Congressional lawmakers are considering a second round of payments to Americans to offset the economic damage of the coronavirus pandemic.

White House economic adviser Kevin Hassett said Tuesday that the White House is “studying very carefully” the possibility of a second round of payments.

Send a tip to the news team at NR.


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