We’ve always known that the Social Security Administration in this country was a mess, but we had no idea it was this bad.
The Washington Free Beacon reported that a new audit just revealed that the SSA issued $171 million in improper payments by paying people twice for their benefits. The inspector general of the SSA found that people with more than one Social Security Number received $171 million, and in many cases, the payments were issued to SSNs held by deceased individuals.
“We identified more than 5,000 instances where, contrary to Agency policy, SSA appeared to simultaneously issue monthly [Old-Age, Survivors and Disability Insurance] OASDI benefits and/or SSI payments to individuals under both of their cross-referred SSNs,” the inspector general said. “We also identified over 13,000 instances where SSA continued paying beneficiaries after it recorded death information on their cross-referred SSNs.”
Nearly 4.9 million people in the United States have more than one SSN. Those who are victims of identity fraud can receive a new SSN, though they are not entitled to receive benefits under both numbers. The inspector general warned that if the government does not fix the thousands of cases where individuals are receiving payments under both numbers, it could cost the government an additional $21.2 million over the next year.
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