Unpaid child support will be deducted from coronavirus stimulus check

Published: Apr. 15, 2020 at 10:46 PM EDT
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Millions of Americans are receiving COVID-19 relief payments -- $1,200 per adult and $500 per child.

But those who owe back child support will have that money deducted from their checks.

Like unemployment payments, unique situations are creating problems with the intended effects of the policy.

Dan Skeens had at one time been behind roughly $1,700 on child support payments. He and his wife Jayne had cut that down to $150 recently. But the bureaucracy behind the stimulus payments didn't update in time.

"With me being laid off and not working I have no income other than what we've been paying. Little bit here, little bit there, trying to stay at least somewhat in the realm of paying the child support." Skeens said.

The Skeens were expecting $2,250. They received less than $700.

"We don't have a problem paying, that is not the issue at all. The issue is them taking it twice," Jayne said. "It's frustrating that no one anticipated that this would be an issue and had anything in place, and then when it is an issue, there's absolutely not one person that you can talk to."

There is an appeals process of sorts; people in the Skeens' situation have the option to file an "injured spouse form" with the IRS to get a refund.


Ohio Senator Sherrod Brown's Office issued the following statement on the issue: