The IRS has stated on several occasions that prisoners cannot receive the stimulus check, however, there are judges who disagree.
At the end of March, the American government signed the CARES Act, the largest economic rescue in the history of the country, to address the labor and economic crisis that followed the still latent outbreak of the coronavirus.
Through this economic package, various reliefs were provided to the citizens of the country of the stars and stripes, among them, the distribution of a stimulus check of $1,200 per individual and up to $2,400 for joint declarations, in addition to $500 extra per dependent.
According to the most recent report from the U.S. Treasury Department, more than 160 million U.S. citizens were paid their stimulus checks on time and in a satisfactory manner. However, there were some failures in the delivery, as relatives of deceased persons, as well as prisoners, received the payment in an erroneous manner, so the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) urged that the money be returned, as they were not entitled to receive the payment.
Stimulus check: Can prisoners cash it if they meet the conditions?
Now, almost seven months after the passage of the CARES Act and with the possible arrival of a second stimulus check, several judges have spoken out against withholding the payment from prisoners, so they have begun a campaign to allow prisoners to enjoy the federal benefit, provided they meet certain conditions.
“There is nothing in the CARES Act that gives the IRS authority to decide that incarcerated persons are not eligible for stimulus checks,” said Senator Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio), “Inmates, who are disproportionately people of color and from low-income communities – already suffer from a lack of resources and increased exposure to Covid-19 due to the prison system’s failed response to the virus. Incarcerated people and their families need more help during this pandemic, not more undue punishment,” the Democrat concluded.
Meanwhile, U.S. District Court Judge Phyllis Hamilton issued an order that included a requirement for the IRS and the Treasury Department to stop withholding stimulus checks from prisoners based on their incarceration status. It is estimated that with this order, at least 80,000 incarcerated citizens could receive payment from a second stimulus check.