Shawnee man receives stimulus check for mother-in-law who died in 2018

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SHAWNEE, Kan. — The rush to get coronavirus stimulus payments to American taxpayers may have come with some unintended consequences.

It turns out, some of those checks were mailed out to people who died in 2018 and 2019.

One person who got a check was Gary Davidson’s late mother-in-law who died in August 2018.

“She was a good human being. She cared for her family and cared for her friends.”

When he got a check in the mail, he was surprised to learn that it was addressed to his late relative.

“In fact the name on the check had her name and it also identified her as deceased.”

At first, he thought it was odd, but then came the question of what to do with the check.

“Uh, totally surprised. Very unusual. First thing that came to our mind is what do we do and how to we take care of this? And then the second thing was how many others are there out there like this that have a check and some family member is deceased and what do they do with it?”

Gary reached out to his congressional representative Sharice Davids’ office, which confirmed they’d gotten several similar calls and were working on a way to fix the situation.

Wednesday, the IRS clarified, saying people who receive stimulus checks for dead relatives need to send them back.

An IRS spokesperson was not able to tell FOX4 how many payments like this were issued or how the mistake happened in the first place.

“Mistakes can happen and I know that there was probably a big rush to get these checks out to the community for the stimulus program, but still you would have thought that somebody would have checked the fact that some were going to people that are already passed away.”

Under the guidance issued Wednesday, people who’ve received a check in the mail for a deceased relative are asked to void the check and mail it back .

If the check came in the form of direct deposit or if it was already cashed, a personal check or money order for the full amount should be sent to the IRS.

You can find more information on the IRS website here.

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