Dean of students among fraudsters who got social security for the dead

the dead

Even the dead collect social security in the USA. (Photo: Day on the Day)

The Inspector General at the Social Security Administration featured an article at the government website and one thing is made clear. The federal bureaucracy has a lot of work to do when it comes to accountability with the money you and I hand over. We should start with a proactive policy instead of a reactive policy.

People who collected social security paid to a dead person included the dean of students at a Virginia school.

The article recounts specific cases involving fraudsters who collected social security payments for people who had long been dead.

A Pittsburgh man ripped off U.S. taxpayers for more than $300,000:

“Here’s another recent case of a Pennsylvania man who admitted to cashing his deceased mother’s Social Security for almost 40 years—from her death in 1973 until 2012.  He pled guilty in Federal court, and will be sentenced on January 23 to a maximum of 10 years in prison and a fine of $250,000.”

For “almost 40 years”? How inexcusable is that?

Apparently the government waits for funeral homes, state agencies, or a family member to send notification the payee is deceased. It would make more sense for a state to provide the government a notice of a person’s death certificate.

No one even knows how much fraud is committed against taxpayers. Each case the IG referenced involved hundreds of thousands of dollars.

One woman who made off with more than $150,000 was a public school employee, the dean of students at a high school. Did she get fired? Nope. The district just transferred her to another job—“an alternative assignment.”

The former dean’s name is Yvette A. Disnew. She got 6 months for her crime. Did her union help her out of that jam? Not a word is mentioned about repaying the fund. Great role model for the kids, right?

In New York, more than 100 people were indicted for allegedly scheming to bilk SSA out of millions.

The IG keeps a running tally of fraud cases, and not just involving payouts to deceased individuals.

Despite volatility in a fund that has, over decades, required accounting gimmickry for stability, it’s possible for a dead person to get social security. What are the odds the perps will be caught? How much money is never recaptured?

Why did the Obama administration hike social security taxes for some instead of establishing sound procedures to prevent fraud?

(Filed by Kay B. Day/Jan. 21, 2014)

About Kay Day

Kay B. Day is a freelance writer who has published in national and international magazines and websites. The author of 3 books, her work is anthologized in textbooks and collections. She has won awards for poetry, nonfiction and fiction. Day is a member of the American Society of Journalists and Authors and the Authors Guild.
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