Social Security Demands Billions From Workers’ Comp Recipients, Others for Overpayments

September 21, 2023

The Social Security Administration is trying to claw back billions of dollars in disability overpayments, many of them made to people who received workers’ compensation payouts for injuries, an analysis has found.

KFF Health News, part of the Kaiser Family Foundation, along with Cox Media Group reported that the administration collected some $4.7 billion in 2022, while another $22 billion remains outstanding. That was a finding in a recent SSA inspector general’s report.

An official with the Urban Institute said the group’s research shows that the administration has sent letters to millions of people across the country who receive disability benefits, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution and other news outlets reported. One woman said she received a notice in 2017 that she had been overpaid $126,600 because she had received workers’ compensation benefits.

Many states require that Social Security benefits be offset against workers’ comp payouts. But the SSA, with staffing shortages and antiquated bookkeeping, has not policed its own payments very well, the investigation found.

Clawbacks by SSA can come in the form of reduced payments, garnishment of wages or by intercepting tax refunds, the news outlets reported.

Topics Workers' Compensation

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