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.
Featured Coverage of this Story
From the CenterSocial Security's $20 Billion Error Raises Questions in Congress
Members of Congress are demanding answers after it was revealed the Social Security Administration is trying to claw back $20 billion in overpayments.
The SSA regained $4.7 billion of overpayments during the 2022 fiscal year, but ended the year with $21.6 billion still outstanding, according to a report by agency's inspector general.
Social Security benefits are paid to people who have retired, people who are disabled and the survivors of workers who have died. For many, the payments make up the bulk of their income and some recipients have told Newsweek of their fears after being sent...
From the LeftSocial Security overpayments draw scrutiny and outrage from Congress
Several members of Congress are calling on the Social Security Administration to answer for issuing billions of dollars of payments it says beneficiaries weren’t entitled to receive — and then demanding the money back.
Many of the recipients are elderly, poor, or disabled and have already spent the money. They have little or no way of repaying it.
“The government’s got to fix this,” said Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio), who chairs a Senate panel that oversees Social Security.
“It’s a management problem, and people there should be held accountable,” Brown...
From the RightSocial Security update: SSA says billions owed in overpayments to beneficiaries
Participants of the Social Security Administration's various programs have received letters in the mail claiming that they owe thousands of dollars because they were admittedly overpaid by the administration.
Some recipients have reported that they were told to return $67,000 over the next 30 days or submit a partial refund with a letter explaining their circumstances, the beneficiaries told Newsweek. Beneficiaries can also appeal the refund.
During the last fiscal year, the administration said it regained $4.7 billion of overpayments, but another $21.6 billion remained outstanding, according to a report by SSA's inspector general.
"We continually strive to...