DearColleague.us

Letter

Dina Titus

From the office of:

Dina Titus

Sending Office: Honorable Dina Titus
Sent By:
Erica.Riordan@mail.house.gov

Deadline: Thursday, April 23rd at 12:00 PM

Current Signers: Titus, Raskin, McGovern, Khanna

Dear Colleague, 

I invite you to join me in sending the letter below to Secretary Mnuchin, Secretary DeVos, and Commissioner Rettig regarding technical glitches that prevent American citizens living abroad from being able to access IRS Economic Impact Payments and student
loan relief provided under the CARES Act. Despite intention to include Americans abroad and fields for foreign addresses, the IRS system does not allow taxpayers to input non-U.S. bank information or non-U.S. zip codes; and for Federal Student Loan forbearance,
the toll-free phone numbers are not accessible outside the United States. It is critical that these issues are resolved so that our constituents living abroad can access these much-needed benefits. 

To sign on, please contact Erica Riordan in my office at Erica.Riordan@mail.house.gov. 

————-

Dear Secretary Mnuchin, Secretary DeVos, and Commissioner Rettig,

We write today regarding concerns we have heard from Americans abroad in implementation of the CARES Act. Coronavirus is a global pandemic; and as such, thousands of Americans living abroad also face economic hardship and need assistance provided under the
CARES Act. We ask that you ensure they can access necessary relief by making the technical fixes outlined below.

Americans abroad whose income levels fall below the filing threshold have attempted to use the “Non-Filers: Enter Information Here” tool online published by the IRS. While we are pleased that it accommodates taxpayers with foreign addresses, it does not
enable a user to provide a bank account for a non-U.S. bank, hindering their ability to receive the Economic Impact Payments via direct deposit. It is critical that direct deposit is available, as postal service around the world has experienced service disruptions
due to the coronavirus pandemic. We ask that you modify the online tool to include a field for bank accounts with non-U.S. banks and a field for non-U.S. phone numbers, as many non-U.S. phone numbers have more than ten digits.

We also ask that these features be included in the “Get My Payment” tool for those American taxpayers who have filed but do not have direct deposit information recorded with the IRS. Again, the tool anticipates use by Americans with non-U.S. residential
addresses, because in the taxpayer information screen the system notes that the zip code is “required, except for countries without a zip or post code.” Unfortunately, the tool will not let the user advance to the next screen without providing a zip code.
We ask that you correct the zip code input requirements and ensure that subsequent screens also allow for non-U.S. bank information.

The Federal Student Loan borrower forbearance granted in the CARES Act continues to be inaccessible for Americans abroad who cannot call the Federal Student Loan Servicer toll-free numbers from outside the United States.  We ask that Treasury collaborate
with the Department of Education to provide a phone number or electronic mechanism that Federal Student Loan Borrowers abroad can use to communicate their intention to suspend loan payments for 60 days, as provided by the CARES Act.

The CARES Act was clear in its intention to include eligible Americans living abroad. The IRS tools for facilitating the delivery of the Economic Impact Payments invite use by aid-eligible citizens living outside the United States. We understand the urgency
with which you have been directed to make these tools and resources available, but it is critical that they are fixed expeditiously as well. We urge you to ensure these glitches are corrected so that eligible Americans living abroad can access much needed
relief. Thank you for your attention to this matter.

 

Sincerely,

Dina Titus
Member of Congress

Related Legislative Issues

Selected legislative information: Economy, Education, Taxes

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