Your source for news affecting the U.S. Social Security Administration/© Charles T. Hall
And it usually involves fraud by a living family member - go figure.
not really, as mentioned above, there is fraud.But there is also some siginficant lag associated with SSA finding out that someone is dead. Can you imagine the opposite, SSA stopping payment before someone was dead, then you would be up in arms about the inequity. SSA is conservative about stopping payments. Does this cost some money...of course, but it helps ensure people aren't cut off too early.Until people are OK with universal access to medical/death records, this will continue.
The dead people aren't the problem. The live ones that commit fraud cashing the check are the problem. Arrest and prosecute to the fullest.
Dead people cannot cash a check. Dead people cannot withdraw money from an account. Dead people cannot close out a financial account. Payments are made after death, but collection of any incorrect payments must be done immediately from any estate or account held by the deceased or from that person who had access or used such funds.
There's basically no way to eliminate some of this. Social Security benefits are paid one month behind... i.e. you receive your benefit for January in February. Payments for those in the first payment cycle (3rd of the month) must be certified to Treasury before the end of the month in order to be direct deposited on time. Some people will die on the days between the time when the payments are certified to the Treasury and the end of the month. These people will be incorrectly paid. In most cases, the money will quickly be recovered when the Treasury withdraws it from their bank accounts upon learning that they are dead. And that's assuming that the death is immediately reported to Social Security. Someone might die towards the end of the month and--not unreasonably--the family might take a couple of days to report it (or they might die alone and no one might even know they're dead for several days.)This is something that will never be able to be eliminated entirely.
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