Nessel cautions seniors and senior living facilities about stimulus payments
LANSING — Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel is reminding residents and operators of nursing homes and other care facilities that Economic Impact Payments (EIPs) – often referred to as stimulus payments – belong to the person named on the check, not to the organization providing care.
The second round of stimulus payments has been approved and the payments are being sent out over the next few months. These payments are intended for the person named on the check, not for the assisted living community or nursing facility in which they reside.
The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has reported that during the first round of stimulus payments, some nursing homes and assisted living communities were taking those payments from their residents, particularly those on Medicaid. The residents were reportedly coerced into signing over their checks to the facility in which they were housed.
During this second round of stimulus payments, Attorney General Nessel is alerting seniors not to sign over their stimulus payment to anyone under any circumstance – the payment is intended for the individual named on the check. The care facility cannot take or require anyone to sign over their EIP payment.
“If someone qualifies for a stimulus payment, it is theirs to keep and is not owed to the care facility where they live. If someone suspects they are being coerced into signing over their payment, I urge you to report it to my office,” Nessel said. “We are committed to protecting Michigan’s vulnerable population and will thoroughly review any complaints we receive for wrongdoing and pursue additional legal action if warranted.”
The Attorney General’s office has not received any reports of this happening in Michigan, but anyone with evidence of a facility demanding a senior resident’s EIP payment is encouraged to report it to the Attorney General’s office as follows:
Unlicensed care facilities – Financial Crimes Division at 517-335-7560
Licensed care facilities – Heath Care Fraud Division at 800-242-2873