- A man in Illinois filed a lawsuit Friday alleging that the Trump administration discriminated against US citizens who are married to “unauthorized” US residents in creating the requirements for receiving aid under the $2.2 trillion CARES Act.
- The lawsuit claims that a provision of the act — added by the Trump administration — bars US citizens from receiving any stimulus money if they filed joint tax returns with their spouse who is an unauthorized immigrant.
- The lawsuit cites a report by the Migration Policy Institute that estimates there are around 1.2 million unauthorized US residents married to US citizens.
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The Trump administration is facing a lawsuit over the March $2.2 trillion COVID-19 stimulus package, facing claims it denied aid to married couples where one of the spouses is an “unauthorized” immigrant without a social security number.
The lawsuit was filed Friday in a federal court in Chicago by a man identified only by the pseudonym John Doe. It alleges the US government discriminated against Doe “based solely on whom he chose to marry,” according to The Hill.
The lawsuit targets President Donald Trump, Acting Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin, and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell — all Republicans.
Under the CARES Act, signed into law by Trump on March 27, individuals earning less than $75,000 annually are eligible to receive checks of $1,200 and up to $500 additional aid for their children under the age of 16. The money is distributed by the Internal Revenue Service.
Couples who filed joint tax returns could receive the maximum payment if their combined income was less than $150,000. But due to a provision added by the Trump administration, both partners are required to have a social security number for either partner to receive any aid, the lawsuit alleges.
Doe said his wife pays her taxes through a Tax Identification Number, which is a number assigned to undocumented immigrants by the IRS and allows unauthorized immigrants to pay taxes to the US government.
According to the National Immigration Law Center, the Internal Revenue Service “issues ITINs to individuals who are not eligible to obtain a Social Security number. These taxpayers include unauthorized immigrants as well as lawfully present individuals, such as certain survivors of domestic violence, Cuban and Haitian entrants, and spouses and children of individuals with employment visas.”
The lawsuit Friday cites a report from the Migration Policy Institute that estimates there are 1.2 million unauthorized US residents married to US citizens.