Feds sent $1.4B in stimulus checks to over a million deceased

National News

The Government Accountability Office said in its report that the IRS does not currently have a plan in place to notify ineligible recipients.

FILE – In this April 23, 2020, file photo, President Donald Trump’s name is seen on a stimulus check issued by the IRS to help combat the adverse economic effects of the COVID-19 outbreak, in San Antonio. Hundreds of thousands of dollars in coronavirus relief payments have been sent to people behind bars across the United States, and now the IRS is asking state officials to help claw back the cash that the federal tax agency says was mistakenly sent. (AP Photo/Eric Gay, File)

(NBC News)- More than a million Americans who had died received COVID-19 stimulus payments totaling $1.4 billion, a government watchdog said in a report to Congress released Thursday.

The finding is part of a sweeping review of the federal government’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic by the Government Accountability Office, an independent nonpartisan congressional agency. The report paints a clearer picture of what critics called a muddled rollout by the Internal Revenue Service and the Treasury Department of more than 160 million payments worth $269 billion.

Congress passed a massive $2 trillion stimulus package, called the CARES Act, in March to soften the economic blow of the coronavirus pandemic for American workers and businesses.

Eligible Americans received checks, called Economic Impact Payments, based on their 2018 or 2019 income tax returns, or by filling out a simple tax return. Individuals making up to $75,000 a year received checks for $1,200 and couples making up to $150,000 and filing a joint tax return received $2,400, with an additional $500 per qualifying child. The payments decreased for those making more than $75,000, with an income cap of $99,000 per individual or $198,000 for couples.

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