Virginia stimulus checks are being garnished despite new state law

Virginia stimulus checks are being garnished despite new state law
Kacey Moss wants answers. The 28-year-old is frustrated because a creditor is holding up her latest payment of federal stimulus money. (Source: AP Photo/Eric Gay, File)

RICHMOND, Va. (WWBT) - After lessons learned from the first round of stimulus checks, Virginia leaders made it so any future payments couldn’t be subject to creditors. But one struggling mother from North Chesterfield says the message hasn’t been received.

Kacey Moss wants answers. The 28-year-old is frustrated because a creditor is holding up her latest payment of federal stimulus money.

“I just think personally it’s not right,” said Moss.

Moss, a single mother of two, admits she has a court-ordered lien on her bank account for a hospital bill from two years ago. She says the bank will not release her stimulus funds.

“It’s very hard right now. My mom tries to help me the best she can. I have friends who try to help me the best they can so I’m kind of just trying to manage right now,” said Moss.

But, the new state law is supposed to ensure the payments go to help people support themselves and their families.

“That should not happen. That money should be protected and go to helping families get by in these difficult times,” said Mark Herring, (D) Virginia Attorney General.

The new law was passed during the special session of the Virginia General Assembly after state officials learned that the initial round of $1,200 support payments issued by Congress last year was vulnerable to seizure or garnishment.

“There have been some challenges with people trying to get their stimulus check. My office can be on standby for support and advise where one is in that system,” said Rep. Abigail Spanberger, (D) VA 7th District.

Representatives from Spanberger’s office, the Virginia Attorney General’s office and the Virginia Department of Social Services are trying to figure out why this is happening to Moss and others.

Moss just wants her check to help her family during these trying times.

“Even if by any chance they just came to a conclusion of taking my 600 I guess away and keeping it in the bank I’m fine with that but my children have nothing to do with things going on,” said Moss.

If you are also having an issue right now, call the state’s consumer protection hotline. The number is 1 (800) 552-9963.

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