Deceased southern Ill. man’s family receives stimulus check for him

Updated: May. 5, 2020 at 5:58 PM CDT
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JACKSON COUNTY, Ill. (KFVS) - As millions of Americans await their stimulus check, one family in Jackson County was surprised to get a check in the mail for their deceased loved one.

Diana Steinbach lost her father in April 2018.

One day, as her husband, Chuck Steinbach, was checking the mail, he found a notification from the IRS.

“And to my surprise, I had two letters from the IRS,” he said. “One addressed to my wife and I and the other addressed to my father in law, Bill Daum. Deceased.”

"I know there are going to be cracks in the system, but this one is a pretty good sized crack."

When Diana heard about the news that her deceased father was receiving a stimulus check, she said she was very surprised.

"So I said, ‘You have got to be kidding!’... So I said, ‘Give me a break’,” Mrs. Steinbach said.

She was her dad’s power of attorney, so she immediately took it upon herself to call the bank.

"I said, ‘this is for my dad, and it says deceased,’ and she had pulled it up and it had gone into my account,” Diana Steinbach said.

“How many other people who are deceased are going to get stimulus checks,” Chuck Steinbach asked.

According to the IRS, checks did go out to deceased people because they did not have time to cross-reference all databases as a they tried to get the money out as quickly as possible.

The Steinbachs said they felt they did the right thing.

"Well, it’s not our money, and we didn’t deserve someone else’s money,” he said.

Diana Steinback agreed.

“He would have wanted that. He would not have wanted us to keep that money," she said.

She said her worries and concerns are for people in need, like single moms or households without work.

“You know, we all make mistakes,” she said. "You’re going to have things go through the cracks. But I think that they really need to double down on and check on this, especially for the people who are waiting and deserved the checks.”

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said checks delivered to deceased relatives need to be returned the government.

According to Patricia McLaughlin with the U.S. Treasury Department, you should return the entire payment unless the payment was made to joint filers and one spouse had not died before receiving the payment. In that case, you only need to return the portion of the payment made on account of the decedent. This amount will be $1,200 unless adjusted gross income exceeded $150,000.

Here’s information on how to send it back:

If the payment was a paper check:

  • Write “Void” in the endorsement section on the back of the check.
  • Mail the voided Treasury check immediately to the appropriate IRS location listed below.
  • Don’t staple, bend, or paper clip the check.
  • Include a note stating the reason for returning the check.

If the payment was a paper check and you have cashed it, or if the payment was a direct deposit:

  • Submit a personal check, money order, etc., immediately to the appropriate IRS location listed below.
  • Write on the check/money order made payable to “U.S. Treasury” and write 2020EIP, and the taxpayer identification number (social security number,  or individual taxpayer identification number) of the recipient of the check.
  • Include a brief explanation of the reason for returning the EIP.

For paper checks, here are the IRS mailing addresses to use based on the state:

If you live in...then mail to this address
Main, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, VermontAndover Refund Inquiry Unit
1310 Lowell St. Mail Stop 666A
Andover, MA 01810
Georgia, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, VirginiaAtlanta Refund Inquiry Unit
4800 Buford Hwy. Mail Stop 112
Chamblee, GA 30341
Florida, Louisiana, Mississippi, Oklahoma, TexasAustin Refund Inquiry Unit
3651 S. Interregional Hwy 35 Mail Stop 6542
Austin, TX 78741
New YorkBrookhaven Refund Inquiry Unit
5000 Corporate Ct. Mail Stop 547
Holtsville, NY 11742
Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Nevada, New Mexico, Oregon, Utah, Washington, Wisconsin, WyomingFresno Refund Inquiry Unit
5045 E. Butler Avenue Mail Stop B2007
Fresno, CA 93888
Arkansas, Connecticut, Delaware, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, New Jersey, Ohio, West VirginiaKansas City Refund Inquiry Unit
333 W. Pershing Rd. Mail Stop 6800 N-2
Kansas City, MO 64108
Alabama, North Carolina, North Dakota, South Carolina, South Dakota, TennesseeMemphis Refund Inquiry Unit
5333 Getwell Rd. Mail Stop 8422
Memphis, TN 38118
District of Columbia, Idaho, Illinois, Pennsylvania, Rhode IslandPhiladelphia Refund Inquiry Unit
2970 Market St. DP 3-L08-151
Philadelphia, PA 19104
A foreign country, U.S. possession or territory, or use an APO or FPO address or file Form 2555 or 4563 or are a dual-status alienAustin Refund Inquiry Unit
3651 S. Interregional Hwy 35 Mail Stop 6542 AUSC
Austin, TX 78741

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