March 18, 2021

Brown Urges Colleagues to Protect Americans’ Stimulus Checks from Financial Predators

WASHINGTON, D.C. — U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-OH) –Chairman of the U.S. Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs – took to the Senate Floor to urge his colleagues to pass his legislation that would protect Americans’ stimulus checks from garnishment by debt collectors.

Sen. Brown’s remarks, as prepared for delivery, follow:

Mr./Mdme. President,

We passed the American Rescue Plan to get:

  • Shots in people’s arms
  • Money in people’s pockets
  • Kids back in schools
  • Workers in jobs

Stimulus checks are already going out the door – more than 100 million checks are already in Americans’ bank accounts.

More than 5 million Ohioans are going to get a check.

But we know predatory debt collectors are already lining up to try to take a cut of those checks.

We passed the Rescue Plan to put money in people’s pockets so they can pay their bills and buy groceries and spend money in local businesses to get our economy moving:

Maybe they’ll be able to buy a new washer made by American workers in Clyde, Ohio, or new tires for their car made at Goodyear in Akron.

Maybe they’re looking forward to throwing a small high school graduation party in their backyard, when they get their vaccines, with a cake and BBQ from a local restaurant.

That’s why we passed these checks – to support families and to support local economies, not to line the pockets of predatory private debt collectors.

That’s why I appreciate Senator Wyden’s work with us on this bill to protect Americans’ stimulus checks from financial predators.

We know how aggressive these private debt collectors can be. They harass people, they prey on workers trying to make ends meet, and now they want to take this money before it ever reaches Americans’ bank accounts.

Banks and debt collectors should not be able to take people’s stimulus payments and use it to pay themselves.

We can’t let that happen, and this bill will put a stop to it, just like we did last year.

Last year, we joined our colleagues Senator Grassley and Senator Scott to pass bipartisan legislation protecting people’s money.

There’s no reason it should be any different this time.

We’re still in a public health crisis, millions of Americans are still out of a job and struggling to pay their bills.

And we still want these checks to stimulate the economy, and end up supporting American businesses – not financial predators.

My colleagues have a choice – whose side are you on? Are you going to protect workers and their families, or are you going to protect debt collectors?

Join us and pass this commonsense step to protect Americans’ stimulus checks.