The Social Security Administration paid out nearly $38 million to veterans that were already dead, according to an Inspector General report released last week.
The Inspector General for the Social Security Administration found a systematic problem in which the SSA continues to send payments to veterans after they were listed as dead by the Veterans Administration. In other cases, the VA listed people as dead who were still alive.
But the crux of the problem appears to be deaths that aren’t recorded properly and not put into the SSA system to determine whether a payment should continue or stop.
Stephanie Hall, acting deputy chief of staff at the Social Security Administration, told the organization is “reviewing the issue internally.”
“We will continue to process death reports we receive from the VA per our policy, but we are unable to control the accuracy of the information VA provides,” Hall said.
But the issue has been ongoing for several years. In some cases, payments were being sent out to veterans more than a decade after their death.
One veteran who died in 2005 continued to receive benefits until this year, totaling more than $100,000.
The IS recommended that the Social Security Administration review and update its data, as well as work with the VA “to ensure subsequent data exchanges include comprehensive death information.”
This article was sourced and published by The IG Office for Social Security Administration.