Social Security and SSI recipients are among those with the lowest income in the country, but many have yet to receive their coronavirus stimulus checks. The agency issued some guidelines for Social Security recipients regarding their coronavirus stimulus checks recently.
Coronavirus stimulus checks for Social Security recipients
In a press release over the weekend, the Social Security Administration said beneficiaries who have a representative payee who manages their benefits for them will start receiving their coronavirus stimulus checks late this month.
Beneficiaries who live in Puerto Rico, Guam, American Samoa, the U.S. Virgin Islands and the Northern Mariana Islands will start receiving their benefits from their local tax authority early next month. The Social Security Administration advises beneficiaries who live in one of the U.S. territories to contact their local tax authority with any questions about their coronavirus stimulus checks, also referred to as economic impact payments.
To check the status of your coronavirus stimulus check, use the IRS' Get My Payment tool here. If you do not file taxes, and you want to check your status, use the tool for non-filers here. If you're receiving the error "status not available," try entering your street address in all caps. Many users have said that made the tool start working for them.
If you or a loved one lives in a nursing home…
Some Medicaid beneficiaries live in nursing homes, and there's an additional warning for them. The Federal Trade Commission warned in a blog post that some nursing homes are claiming that they have a right to take their coronavirus stimulus checks. They then require Medicaid recipients who live in their facilities to sign the funds over to the facility.
However, the CARES Act, which is the bill that drove the coronavirus stimulus checks, stipulates that the payments are tax credits. Because of that classification, they aren't considered to be "resources" for federal benefit programs like Medicaid. That also means the government can't seize the payments, which also means that nursing homes and assisted living facilities can't take it from residents who are on Medicaid either.
Those whose loved ones have already had their stimulus money taken should contact their state attorney general's office. In some cases, they may need to file an online complaint with the FTC. Those with loved ones on Medicaid and living in a nursing home or assisted living facility should check to see what happened to their economic impact payments to ensure they weren't swindled out of them by the facility they live in.