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Nursing homes cannot take your stimulus check, FTC warns families of residents

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Posted at 12:00 PM, Jan 04, 2021
and last updated 2021-01-04 12:29:34-05

INDIANAPOLIS — The Federal Trade Commission issued a warning Monday to families with loved ones in nursing homes or assisted living facilities regarding the second round of stimulus checks that are on their way to mailboxes and bank accounts.

The $600 stimulus checks, also known as Economic Impact Payments, are meant for the person, not the facility where they live, the FTC said.

In the first round of stimulus checks, some nursing home facilities tried to take the payments intended for their residents, particularly those on Medicaid.

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“We would hope those facilities have learned their lesson,” said Lois Greisman, Elder Justice Coordinator with the FTC. “But, just in case, let’s be clear: If you qualify for a payment, it’s yours to keep. If a loved one qualifies and lives in a nursing home or assisted living facility, it’s theirs to keep.”

The facility may not put their hands on your loved one’s stimulus check or require somebody to sign it over to them— even if that somebody is on Medicaid, according to the FTC.

“It would be worth a quick chat with management of the facility in question, just to remind them that the rules are the same this time through,” said Greisman. “And if you hear about a nursing home or assisted living facility being grabby about Economic Impact Payments, tell your state attorney general right away. And then tell the FTC at www.ReportFraud.ftc.gov.”

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