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House of Representatives
Session of 2015 - 2016 Regular Session


Posted: January 5, 2015 02:48 PM
From: Representative Adam Harris
To: All House members
Subject: Lottery winnings/state tax delinquencies, welfare benefit check and crime victim’s restitution - (previous HB 1489)
In the near future I will be re-introducing HB 1489 which passed the House unanimously last session. If enacted, my legislation will require the Department of Revenue to conduct a background check on any individual that wins more than $2,500 as a result of playing the Pennsylvania Lottery to determine if the individual owes back taxes to the Commonwealth. In the event the background check leads to a determination of taxes owed, the amount owed will be deducted from any winnings and remitted to the Commonwealth. Current state law only requires the Department of Revenue and the Department of Public Welfare to work together to garnish lottery winnings when back child support is owed. In a situation where both back child support and back taxes are owed the child support obligation will be given first priority.

In addition, this legislation would require a welfare benefit check on each lottery winner who wins a prize more than $2,500. If it is determined that the individual is collecting public assistance benefits the amount of the lottery winning will be provided to the Department of Human Services and must be considered when determining if the individual should continue to receive benefits. The legislation also allows for an intercept of lottery winnings if an individual has not paid his or her court ordered restitution to the victim(s) of the crime they perpetrated. The language relating to a welfare benefit check was added by Rep. Benninghoff via amendment to my legislation last session and the language relating to crime victim’s restitution was added by Rep. Stephens also by amendment.

If you wish to join me in cosponsoring this legislation, please click the link below. Contact Valerie Kane at 783-7830 if you have any additional questions. Thank you for your consideration of this matter.

Introduced as HB251