Democratic Reps. Lou Correa of California, Judy Chu of California and Raúl Grijalva of Arizona on April 3 introduced the bill, the Leave No Taxpayer Behind Act, “to allow 2020 recovery rebates to be made on the basis of an individual’s taxpayer identification number.”
The legislation has nearly 50 co-sponsors, including Democratic Reps. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York, Ilhan Omar of Minnesota and Ruben Gallego of Arizona. The House, which is controlled by Democrats, has not passed the bill.
What the bill would do
The bill would amend the qualifications necessary to receive federal support provided by the CARES Act, the emergency coronavirus relief bill passed in March.
The CARES Act requires recipients of benefits to provide a valid Social Security number, which undocumented immigrants don’t have and can’t legally get.
“When undocumented immigrants work with a SS number, it is either fake or someone else’s,” Steven Wallace, a community health sciences professor at UCLA said in an emailed statement to PolitiFact.
The Leave No Taxpayer Behind Act would amend the CARES Act by adding an Individual Taxpayer Identification Number as an acceptable credential to receive government benefits.
An ITIN is a number assigned by the Internal Revenue Service to make sure people who are not permitted to receive a Social Security number pay taxes “regardless of their immigration status,” according to the American Immigration Council, a nonprofit immigration research and advocacy organization.
Individuals with ITINs are “not eligible for all of the tax benefits and public benefits that U.S. citizens and other taxpayers can receive,” the immigration group says on its website. “For example, an ITIN holder is not eligible for Social Security benefits or the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC).”