Overcoming COVID-19 Together: How to Include Immigrant Families in Federal Relief Programs

Despite immigrants being heavily represented in essential jobs with a high risk of exposure to COVID-19, the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act excluded millions of immigrants and their U.S. citizen family members from stimulus payments. Immigrant families hit hardest by the pandemic’s economic effects are more likely to live in poverty, and more than a third have minor children. Under the CARES Act, stimulus payments are denied to entire families if the tax filer (or spouse, if filing jointly) uses an Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN). But, a fix to this problem is possible. This fact sheet highlights major differences in federal bills that aim to remedy this exclusion.