Deceased Frazee woman gets federal stimulus check

Published: Apr. 29, 2020 at 6:55 PM CDT
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There are dozens of news stories popping up of deceased people getting federal stimulus checks.

Sherry Blaine of Frazee, Minnesota, said her mom who died in February of 2019 received a check on Monday. .

“It just irritated me to no end because it's just so wasteful,” Blaine said.

The letter has a box on the envelope that reads to send it back if the person is deceased, which Blaine plans to do.

“The idea of a federal government printing these checks. Sending them in the mail, when they obviously, on record somewhere know that she is deceased” is what’s bothersome, Blaine said.

Blaine said she’s worried that we as a country are racking up so much debt.

“My grandchildren and great grandchildren are going to be paying for this ridiculous mess up,” she said.

Blaine sent a letter to both U.S. Senators and the House member for her district U.S. Rep. Colin Peterson.

Sen. Smith, D-MN, responded saying her office has received conflicting reports on how the Internal Revenue Service would handle this issue.

Smith's office also said the IRS doesn't have guidance on the issue.

If you notice money was deposited in a dead relative’s account, you shouldn’t spend it, according to Devon Liljenquist, CPA, of Arrow Advisors.

“I would just hold on to it for now,” Liljenquist said.

Liljenquist said no one knows if you’ll have to pay the money back if you spend it. The IRS has yet to issue guidance on what people should do.

“It’s kind of more of an ethics issue. I don't think it was the legislative intent of the program to give checks out to deceased people. So really you have to almost think of it as a clerical error,” Liljenquist said.

U.S. Treasury Secretary Steve Munichin told the Wall Street Journal people should return the checks of dead relatives to the federal government.

President Donald Trump has echoed the same thing.

According to several published reports, part of the reason dead people got these checks in the first place is due to speed. It would’ve taken the IRS a lot longer to send out the emergency funds if the agency had to remove people.

The IRS stated in a media release that it has issued payments to more than 88 million individuals so far worth nearly $138 billion in the program’s first three weeks.