Headline RoundupOctober 3rd, 2023

Social Security Admin Claims Overpayments, Congress Demands Answers

Summary from AllSides News Team

Members of Congress are demanding answers after the Social Security Administration (SSA) said that beneficiaries owe billions in overpayments.

Details: Several lawmakers, like Rep. Mike Carey (R-OH) and Sen. Rick Scott (R-FL), called for congressional hearings and are pushing for the SSA to drop requests for overpayments to be returned. The SSA sent overpayment notices requesting thousands of dollars to people who are disabled, retired, and who are survivors of workers who have died, leading to concern over how the public will handle the overpayments.

Key Quote: "We continually strive to improve stewardship of our programs and reduce improper payments," an SSA spokesperson said. "While staffing losses and resource constraints have challenged our service delivery, our payment accuracy rates remain very high."

For Context: During the 2022 fiscal year, the SSA regained $4.7 billion of overpayments but ended up with a loss of $21.6 billion. The highest a beneficiary can receive from the SSA is $4,555 per month for people who retire at 70.

How the Media Covered it: Sources on all sides highlighted critics of the SSA. Some right-rated sources suggested SSA bureaucracy is to blame for mismanagement and overpayments. Some left-rated sources focused on the specifics of the errors made by the SSA.

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