Man Checked for $1,700 Stimulus Payment and Saw $8 Million in Bank Account

Charles Calvin, a volunteer firefighter from Indiana, was waiting for a $1,700 when millions popped up in his account.

Robin Zlotnick - Author

Apr. 15 2020, Updated 10:59 a.m. ET

People everywhere are wondering when their stimulus check will arrive from the federal government. Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, a huge number of Americans are out of work and are relying on that money to get through the next month.

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Charles Calvin, a volunteer firefighter from New Chicago, IN is one of those people. He had been anxiously awaiting his stimulus check, which was supposed to be in the amount of $1,700. But when he went to the ATM over the weekend, he got quite a shock.

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He told WGN9, "I went to the ATM at the Family Express and once I withdrew $200 out of my account I looked at the available balance still left in my account." 

He was hoping to see that $1,700 stimulus payment in there. Instead, his account had $8.2 million in it. $8.2 million. Can you imagine seeing that amount of money in your account suddenly and without warning?! I sure cannot.

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Charles thought it must be a fluke, so he ran his card again and it said the same thing! Because it was the weekend, he couldn't get in contact with his bank until Monday morning. He just sat with the knowledge that there was $8.2 million in his bank account all weekend. 

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On Monday, he called his bank, and they said they didn't see the money in his checking account anymore. All that was there was the $1,700 stimulus check he was supposed to receive. 

Charles has no idea if there was a fluke with the actual payment, the bank, or the ATM, but it's left him wondering whether the distribution of these payments is going as smoothly as it should. Perhaps people are receiving more than they're meant to. 

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Whoever was at fault for the $8.2 million in Charles' account is very lucky he was responsible and didn't pull it out and spend it. However, he knew it must have been a mistake, so he wasn't about to risk it.

Even so, it's got to be a blow to see $8 million in your account one second, and then go back to being your ol' regular self the next. What a disappointment! 

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"It kind of sucks," Charles told WGN9. "You go from being a millionaire one second then back to being broke again. But hey, once you're poor you don't have anywhere else to go but up."

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It doesn't seem like Charles is ever going to get a clear answer as to what happened, but at this point, he's just happy he received the $1,700 that he was supposed to. 

Many others are still waiting for their stimulus checks to arrive. And it might be a month before they're all distributed (thanks, in part, to Donald Trump's insistence that his signature appears on every single one). To find out when your own stimulus check is expected to arrive, go to the IRS's "Get My Payment" tool on its Economic Impact Payments page starting on Friday, April 17. 

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