Coalition asks Governor Walz to make an executive order prohibiting the garnishment of the federal stimulus payments provided under the CARES Act

Abril 16, 2020
El Honorable Tim Walz
Gobernador
Estado de Minnesota
130 Capitol
St. Paul, MN 55155
Re: Protección de los pagos de estímulo federal de embargo

Estimado Gobernador Walz:

La comunidad firmante y las organizaciones de servicios legales escriben para instarle a emitir, Lo antes posible, una Orden Ejecutiva que prohíbe el embargo de los pagos federales de estímulo previstos en la Ley CARES.1 Mientras que la Ley CARES esculpió exenciones de embargos o compensaciones por las deudas públicas adeudadas, los pagos de estímulo pueden ser asumidos por los cobradores privados de deuda.2

Lamentablemente, lo que tememos ya se está materializando aquí y en otros lugares. El New York Times informó hoy que una mujer de Minnesota y su esposo, un veterano discapacitado, extraviado 100% de sus pagos de estímulo, que habían estado "contando en…para ayudar a pagar el alquiler y comprar fórmula para [Su] 10-hija de un mes de edad. 3 Para prevenir este tipo de daños, esta semana los Gobernadores de Illinois y Washington han suspendido embargos relacionados con el cobro de deudas de los consumidores.4

Que estos pagos estaban destinados a ayudar a los estadounidenses necesitados y no ser desviados a los cobradores de deudas fue dejado claro por los senadores de los Estados Unidos Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio) y Josh Hawley (R-Missouri) en una carta, fechado el 9 de abril, al Secretario del Tesoro Mnuchin. Proféticamente, advirtieron que "los pagos directos corren el riesgo de ser incautados por los cobradores de deudas" y se aclararon"[ese] no es lo que el Congreso pretendía. 5 Y, Notablemente, porque las instituciones financieras deben y siguen la ley, la Asociación Americana de Banqueros y otros grupos bancarios, el Colegio Nacional de Abogados, y la Asociación Internacional de Gestión de Cuentas (representando a los compradores de deuda) todos apoyan mantener estos fondos sacrosantos y buscar autorización gubernamental para permitirles no congelar cuentas bancarias y incautar pagos de estímulo.6

En este momento de necesidad, con tantos Minnesotas ansiosos por no sólo su salud personal y la seguridad, pero también su estabilidad financiera, es esencial que mientras la pandemia arrecia los minnesotas son capaces de marshal todos sus recursos disponibles para seguir siendo capaces de comprar alimentos y medicinas para sus familias, pagar el alquiler o la hipoteca, pagar facturas de servicios públicos, y sobrevivir.

Más, un número alarmante de personas mayores están ensillados de deuda. Según el Consejo Nacional sobre el Envejecimiento, "más personas mayores están llevando deudas a la jubilación…que nunca antes, and the amount of debt burden has skyrocketed over the past decade.”7 This includes significant medical and credit card debt – all of which is subject to seizure unless an Executive Order protecting the stimulus payments is issued.

Obviamente, the financial fragility of elder Minnesotans and all Minnesotans has been substantially exacerbated under the current circumstances. As of April 7, más de 11% of Minnesotans have applied for unemployment.8 And Legal Aid estimates that tens of thousands of Minnesotans are not eligible for the unemployment stimulus.

Without protection against garnishment of the stimulus payments, the harm done to Minnesotans will be irreparable. Por lo tanto, we respectfully ask that you issue an Executive Order that would exempt all federal stimulus payments, except for child support, made to any person residing in the state, either under the CARES Act, Public Law 116-136, or any subsequent congressional act, from garnishment, attachment, or seizure under Minnesota Statutes, section 571.91 Para 571.915, chapter 550, or chapter 551. Thank you so much for your leadership during this crisis and your consideration of this urgent request.

Sinceramente,

  • Ron Elwood, Supervising Attorney, on behalf of the Legal Services Advocacy Project and
  • Jason Adkins, Director Ejecutivo, Conferencia Católica de Minnesota
  • Dave Anderson, Director Ejecutivo, All Parks Alliance for Change
  • Sean Burke, Public Policy Director, Minnesota Elder Justice Center
  • Michael Dahl, Public Policy Director, HOME Line
  • Phil Duran, Director of Advocacy and Research, JustUs Health
  • Tracy Fischman, Director Ejecutivo, Preparar + Prosperar
  • Bill Grant, Director Ejecutivo, Minnesota Community Action Partnership
  • Julie Gugin, Presidente, Minnesota Homeownership Center
  • Cristen Incitti, Director Ejecutivo, Habitat for Humanity of Minnesota
  • Veena Iyer, Director Ejecutivo, Centro de Derecho de Inmigrantes de Minnesota
  • Sharon Jones, Director Ejecutivo, Asistencia Legal del Condado de Dakota, Ltd.
  • Anne Krisnik, Director Ejecutivo, Conjunto religioso coalición legislativa
  • Nan Madden, Director, Proyecto de Presupuesto de Minnesota
  • Sally Nankivell, Director Ejecutivo, Legalcorps
  • Anna Odegaard, Legislative Advocate, Minnesota Asset Building Coalition
  • Meghan Olsen Biebighauser, Congregational Organizer for Economic Justice, Minneapolis Area Synod of the ECLA
  • Sara Nelson-Pallmeyer, Director Ejecutivo, Exodus Lending
  • Jennifer J. Polzin, DIRECTOR GENERAL, Tubman
  • Karen Reid, Director Ejecutivo, Neighborhood Development Alliance (NeDA)
  • Dave Snyder, Organizing Director, Acción Comunitaria Judía
  • Erin Sutton, Advocacy Manager, Lutheran Social Service of Minnesota

c.c.:

  • The Honorable Peggy Flanagan, Lieutenant Governor, Estado de Minnesota
  • The Honorable Keith Ellison, Minnesota Attorney General
  • The Honorable Melissa Hortman, Presidente de la cámara, Minnesota House of Representatives
  • The Honorable Paul Gazelka, Líder de la mayoría, Senado de Minnesota
  • The Honorable Kurt Daudt, Minority Leader, Minnesota House of Representatives
  • The Honorable Susan Kent, Minority Leader, Senado de Minnesota
  • The Honorable John Lesch, Silla, Judiciary Finance and Civil Law Division, Minnesota House of Representatives
  • The Honorable Warren Limmer, Silla, Judiciary and Public Safety Finance and Policy Committee, Senado de Minnesota
  • The Honorable Laurie Halverson, Silla, Commerce Committee, Minnesota House of Representatives
  • The Honorable Gary Dahms, Silla, Commerce and Consumer Protection Finance and Policy Committee, Senado de Minnesota
  • The Honorable Peggy Scott, Republican Lead, Judiciary Finance and Civil Law Division, Minnesota House of Representatives
  • The Honorable Ron Latz, Ranking Minority Member, Judiciary and Pub. Safety Finance and Policy Comm., Senado de Minnesota
  • The Honorable Tim O’Driscoll, Republican Lead, Commerce Committee, Minnesota House of Representatives
  • The Honorable Dan Sparks, Ranking Minority Member, Comm. and Cons. Protection Finance and Policy Comm., Minn. Senado
  • The Honorable Kelly Moller, Vice-Chair, Judiciary Finance and Civil Law Division, Minnesota House of Representatives
  • The Honorable Dan Hall, Vice-Chair, Judiciary and Public Safety Finance and Policy Committee, Senado de Minnesota
  • The Honorable Zach Stephenson, Vice-Chair, Commerce Committee, Minnesota House of Representatives
  • The Honorable Karin Housley, Vice-Chair, Commerce and Cons. Protection Finance and Policy Committee, Senado de Minnesota
  • Señor. Steve Kelley, Commissioner, Minnesota Department of Commerce
  • Ms. Emily Lefholz, Policy Advisor, Office of Governor and Lt. Gobernador
  • Señor. Jon Kelly, Policy Advisor, Office of the Governor and Lt. Gobernador
  • Ms. Carly Melin, Government Affairs Director, Office of the Minnesota Attorney General
  • Ms. Megan Verdeja, Director of Government Affairs, Minnesota Department of Commerce

  1. 1 Child support payments would still be subject to garnishment.
  2. CARES Act, Pub. L. No. 116-136, SEC. 2201(d).
  3. Emily Flitter and Alan Rappeport, Some Banks Keep Customers’ Stimulus Checks if Accounts Are Overdrawn, NEW YORK TIMES, Abril 16, 2020; available at https://www.nytimes.com/2020/04/16/business/stimulus-paychecks-garnishbanks.html?smtyp=cur&smid=fb-nytimes. See also Kelly Davis, Private debt collectors can access stimulus money from personal
    bank accounts, advocacy groups warn, WGN9, Abril 14, 2020; at https://wgntv.com/news/coronavirus/private-debt-collectorscan-access-stimulus-money-from-personal-bank-accounts-advocacy-groups-warn/. See also John Roberts, Debt collectors could seize your stimulus check before you have a chance to use it, lawmakers warn, FORTUNE, Abril 13, 2020; en
    https://fortune.com/2020/04/13/stimulus-check-payment-debt-collectors-when-will-it-arrive-coronavirus-checks-cares-act-irstreasury/
  4. See State of Illinois, Executive Order 2020-25 (Abril 14, 2020); at https://www2.illinois.gov/Pages/ExecutiveOrders/ExecutiveOrder2020-25.aspx and State of Washington, Orden 20-49, PROCLAMATION BY THE GOVERNOR AMENDING PROCLAMATION 20-05 (Abril
  5. Letter from Sherrod Brown and Josh Hawley, United States Senators, to Steven Mnuchin, Secretary, Department of Treasury (Abril 15, 2020).
  6. See Letter from American Bankers Association et al. to Congress (Abril 15, 2020); National Creditors Bar Association, The National Creditors Bar Association (NCBA) Supports Exemption of CARES Act Stimulus Payments from Garnishment (Abril 16, 2020); and Letter from Receivables Management Association International to Steven Mnuchin, Secretary, Department of Treasury (Abril 13, 2020).
  7. National Council on Aging, Senior Debt Facts; at https://www.ncoa.org/economic-security/money-management/debt/seniordebt-facts/
  8. Dane Mizutani, Unemployment in Minnesota: 11.4 percent of labor force has applied for help during coronavirus crisis, PIONEER PRESS, Apr. 8, 2020; disponible en: https://www.twincities.com/2020/04/07/unemployment-in-minnesota-11-4-percent-of-laborforce-has-applied-during-covid-19-crisis/

Versión en PDF