May 25, 2013

Anyone Have A Theory About What Happened Here?

     From WLTV:
Gene Mathis 75, said he looks for strength and comfort in a place where many find them, his bible. ...
Mathis, now retired, said he needs the encouragement to face his problems with Social Security, a problem that is two years old. 
"They said I owe them 30-thousand dollars," he said. 
Mathis was born 1938, but his Panama City school records show he was born 1942. Mathis said the discrepancy has created a problem with his social security benefits. 
 "I can't get no understanding from them," he said, "all these years I have been fighting with them." ... 
He said a few years ago Social Security accused of him of being overpaid; now SSA deducts $100 a month from his benefits to reimburse the government. 
"They get it before I get mines," he said. ... 
"I thought in America a birth certificate meant everything," said Mathis. 
"I guess not in my case, I must be related to Obama." 
 Privacy laws prevents social security from discuss the specifics of the problems with Mathis. But they're taking his concerns seriously. 
"We are contacting Mr. Mathis today and will provide assistance," said Patti Patterson.
     I'll take a wild guess at what may have happened. Mr. Mathis may be one of those rare people who were born in the U.S. but whose birth was not recorded at the time they were born. Later, he or his family later got a delayed birth certificate but Social Security decided at some point to ask for his school records to confirm the date of birth shown on the delayed birth certificate. The school records pointed at a later date of birth and Social Security decided to go by the school records.
     It wasn't that rare to see delayed birth certificates thirty years ago but they have to be quite rare these days. It's been decades since I saw one.
     Anybody have a better theory?


Anonymous said...

Well if they processed his RIB application in 1938+65years= 2003 then tolerates could have used and a numident with no discrepancy could act as proof of age, allowing adjudication. The agency could and would have ran with it. Now lets say he wanted to correct his name or fix some other numident data. Or maybe he had a second ssn that had to get cross referenced. Or maybe a spouse who had entitlement told SSA his real age when she applied for AUX benefits. All these things would resulted in a overpayment. But they would have had to been discovered before 4 years as per GN 04030.050 Administrative Finality. IF we find an later DOB about a 90 year old. They get away Scott free.

Anonymous said...

So his school records show him 4 years younger? So he would have graduated high school in 1960 according to his school records - at age 22? What does his driver's license show?

Anonymous said...

The numident tolerance only started being used a few years ago--since Obama became president. If he filed for RIB in 2000, at his alleged age 62, he would have had to provide proof of age. If he did not have a primary proof of birth--established before age 5--then development of other proofs would have been necessary. People born in the U.S. after the mid-1930's should have lots of different proofs, unless they were off-the-grid for any number of reasons that I can think of.

Anonymous said...

Tolerance for using Numident for establishing a date of birth started during President G.W. Bush's tenure, long before President Obama's.

I am also not sold on it being a change in the DOB. If SSA had used the 1942 DOB from school records after having previously established his DOB after 1938, he would probably be complaining more about Medicare not paying bills because of a DOB discrepancy than an overpayment being recovered. GN 04030.010 would also prevent reopening without fraud or similar fault after 4 years. He said this started only a few years ago, so reopening under that would have been well documented and done outside of 4yrs.

As much as people want to take his word for it, this could be an overpayment he incurred for being a rep payee, garnishment, prior DIB overpayment, etc. Regardless, if the DOB is the culprit here, it sounds like the rules of administrative finality were not adhered to.

NOTE: This is based on the text on FCN, the video story was taken down due to SSN being visible. If he mentioned Medicare was an issue but was resolved, it would clearly indicate a DOB change was done to resolve the CMS billing issue.

Also, complaining about bills, this guy has more possessions than I do o_O

Anonymous said...

Perhaps fraud was found. That would allow reopening for any reason at any time.

Anonymous said...

I had an interview with the son of a Hmong woman who wanted us to change the DOB on the SSI record from a date in the 1920's to some date in the 1940's. Some family member decided to really trace back the correct DOB by obtaining records from Laos. I can't recall what documents were obtained, but they were enough to change the numident. When we tried to change the date on the SSI record, the system computed a huge overpayment because she had filed for SSI aged benefits several decades ago using the 1920ish DOB. And with the new evidence, she was not over 65 when she filed the first claim. I contacted OIG, but they didn't want to do anything. I can't recall the action I took. Maybe nothing.

We do have the ability to use the numident tolerance, but I think CR's have gotten sloppy because it is so easy to do and they ignore the discrepancies. There are a lot of birth dates that I don't trust to be accurate, but we are using them.

The guy in the original post - did he ever file a waiver request and did he submit his appeal up the ladder to the ALJ?