Fraud and Social Security Benefits

Q: What is the penalty for misappropriating someone else’s Social Security benefits?

Many Americans have a “love-hate “relationship with the government. Sure, we enjoy the many rights, benefits and freedoms our government offers, but trying to access some of those benefits can be a nightmare—especially for the more vulnerable members of society like disabled folks.

Applying for Social Security disability benefits (“SSDI”) or Supplemental Security Income (“SSI”), which are two different federal government programs that help the disabled, can be time-consuming and frustrating.

Social Security disability benefits attorney can help streamline the initial application process and increase the likelihood of it being granted the first time around or on appeal. With nearly two-thirds of all initial applications being denied, and the appeals process hearing backlog now approaching delays of almost 2 years, can you afford to be without disability benefits that long?

Those fortunate enough to receive Social Security benefits for either disability or retirement – – and the caregivers for those recipients – – would do well to take note that all good things come to an end.

Reportedly a woman from California’s South Bay area was recently sentenced to prison and ordered to make restitution for her conversion of public funds and fraud after she allegedly continued cashing her dead mother’s Social Security benefits checks for 24 years after her mother died. For nearly a quarter of a century, the woman allegedly filed annual reports documenting how the funds were used to support the mother’s well-being. Instead of advising the government that her mother had died so the social security benefits checks would be discontinued, she allegedly misappropriated $298,168.20 in benefits paid after the woman’s death for her own personal expenses.

There are many complicated aspects to the Social Security disability insurance process beyond initially applying for benefits or appealing a denial of benefits. It’s never too late to get a skilled benefits attorney on board to help you avoid costly mistakes and delays.

If you have questions regarding the many benefits of Social Security disability benefits or need help with an application or appeal, the Social Security disability attorneys at Peňa & Bromberg can help.

From our office in Fresno, we’ve been providing comprehensive legal services to veterans and disabled individuals and their families in Central Valley, California and throughout the United States since 1984. Contact us for a free consultation today.

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