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Shakedown: Treasury now seizing tax refunds from adult children to pay parentsí decades-old SS debts
Hot Air ^ | April 11, 2014 | Allahpundit

Posted on 04/13/2014 6:16:18 PM PDT by 2ndDivisionVet

When I say “debts,” I don’t mean loans that the parents willingly sought from SSA. It would be bad enough to hold a kid responsible for that (since when are children responsible for their parents’ obligations?), but at least it would have been voluntarily incurred by mom/dad. The “debts” here are overpayments of Social Security benefits, the product of SSA’s own errors. The parents who received them might not have even realized they were getting money they weren’t supposed to have. And now, somehow, it’s junior’s problem.

But wait. It gets worse.

When [Mary] Grice was 4, back in 1960, her father died, leaving her mother with five children to raise. Until the kids turned 18, Sadie Grice got survivor benefits from Social Security to help feed and clothe them.

Now, Social Security claims it overpaid someone in the Grice family — it’s not sure who — in 1977. After 37 years of silence, four years after Sadie Grice died, the government is coming after her daughter. Why the feds chose to take Mary’s money, rather than her surviving siblings’, is a mystery…

“It was a shock,” said Grice, 58. “What incenses me is the way they went about this. They gave me no notice, they can’t prove that I received any overpayment, and they use intimidation tactics, threatening to report this to the credit bureaus.”…

Social Security officials told Grice that six people — Grice, her four siblings and her father’s first wife, whom she never knew — had received benefits under her father’s account. The government doesn’t look into exactly who got the overpayment; the policy is to seek compensation from the oldest sibling and work down through the family until the debt is paid.

SSA insists that they did send notice — to a P.O. Box that Grice hasn’t owned for 35 years, even though they have her current address.

How can they demand restitution for a mistaken payment made in the late 1970s, let alone from someone who didn’t even receive it? Because: The farm bill that passed in 2011 lifted the 10-year statute of limitations on debts owed to the feds. Treasury has collected more than $400 million since then on very old obligations, many of them below the radar of public scrutiny because the amounts are often small enough, i.e. a few hundred dollars, that the targets find it’s cheaper to pay up than to fight. It’s a shakedown, based on the flawed assumption that a child not only must have benefited from the overpayment to his parent but that he/she received the entirety of the benefit, with little proof offered that the debt even exists. (One man who was forced to pay demanded a receipt from SSA affirming that his balance was now zero. The SSA clerk told him he’d put in the request but that the man shouldn’t expect to receive anything.) The only reason you’re hearing about Grice’s case, I think, is because they went after her for thousands, not hundreds, of dollars, which was enough of a hit to make her get a lawyer. Turns out that the feds had seized and then continued to hold her federal and state refunds, an amount greater than $4,400 — even though they were only demanding $2,996 from her to pay off her father’s debt. Lo and behold, once WaPo found out and started asking questions, the $1,400 excess was promptly returned to her. Amazing how fast bureaucracy can move when someone looks behind the curtain.

The whole thing is Kafkaesque — opaque, oppressive, arbitrary, and sinister in its indifference to making sure the right person pays so long as someone does. After reading the story, it’s not obvious to me what’s stopping Treasury from demanding a payment from every taxpayer whose parents are dead. If the chief witnesses are gone and the feds don’t have to prove that a child actually received any benefits from overpayment, the only “check” on this process is SSA’s willingness to tell the truth about who owes them money and how much. You trust them, don’t you?

Exit question from Karl: Isn’t holding children responsible for their parents’ retirement debts the governing model of the Democratic Party?


TOPICS: Crime/Corruption; Government; Politics/Elections
KEYWORDS: irs; obama; socialsecurity; taxes
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So they're just like the mafia?
1 posted on 04/13/2014 6:16:18 PM PDT by 2ndDivisionVet
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Yes.


2 posted on 04/13/2014 6:18:52 PM PDT by PieterCasparzen (We have to fix things ourselves)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

And for all this trouble with dubious debts they are getting what, enough to run Washington for five minutes?

Ah, but it’s cool. “It’s a tax.”


3 posted on 04/13/2014 6:26:03 PM PDT by HiTech RedNeck (Embrace the Lion of Judah and He will roar for you and teach you to roar too. See my page.)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Ah, but try getting money back retroactively from them. If your refund is more than three year old, you get zip credit.

Also if both you and your spouse paid SS, only one gets a check. how about that.


4 posted on 04/13/2014 6:27:19 PM PDT by lavaroise (A well regulated gun being necessary to the state, the rights of the militia shall not be infringed)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
"Turns out that the feds had seized and then continued to hold her federal and state refunds, an amount greater than $4,400 — even though they were only demanding $2,996 from her to pay off her father’s debt. Lo and behold, once WaPo found out and started asking questions, the $1,400 excess was promptly returned to her. Amazing how fast bureaucracy can move when someone looks behind the curtain."

Kind of like the way the BLM also quickly backed down when the Reid/ChiCom land grab for solar power came to light.

5 posted on 04/13/2014 6:27:52 PM PDT by fella ("As it was before Noah so shall it be again,")
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

check if they going after gop donors using this as an excuse


6 posted on 04/13/2014 6:27:56 PM PDT by 4rcane
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

This just isn’t right(morally speaking).

If the Republicans had a brain, they would beat 0bama and the Dems over the head with this every day, from now until November.


7 posted on 04/13/2014 6:30:02 PM PDT by KoRn (Department of Homeland Security, Certified - "Right Wing Extremist")
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To: KoRn
"If the Republicans had a brain..."

Therein lies the rub.

8 posted on 04/13/2014 6:30:57 PM PDT by 2ndDivisionVet (I will raise $2M for Cruz and/or Palin's next run, what will you do?)
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To: HiTech RedNeck

All this urgency language is the same as a police brutality video. There is no reason in 90% of those cases for the cops to hurry people or force them to say something.

This whole culture has me incensed.

That liberals buy or support this crypto dictatosprship executive orders language of Obama is absolute evil.... coming for the people who always cry for the like of mumiah jamal or Rodney King.

The Occutards and the brutalizing government are one and the same.


9 posted on 04/13/2014 6:31:27 PM PDT by lavaroise (A well regulated gun being necessary to the state, the rights of the militia shall not be infringed)
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To: lavaroise

Talk about a marriage penalty.


10 posted on 04/13/2014 6:34:07 PM PDT by HiTech RedNeck (Embrace the Lion of Judah and He will roar for you and teach you to roar too. See my page.)
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To: lavaroise

“Also if both you and your spouse paid SS, only one gets a check. how about that.”

Don’t believe that’s true...


11 posted on 04/13/2014 6:35:14 PM PDT by babygene ( .)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

The number one thing to learn from this...do not have more withheld than your tax liability so that you can get ‘a refund’ . . . when you have too much withheld, you are loaning the gov’t money interest free . . . and when they do this kind of shit, you are SOL


12 posted on 04/13/2014 6:38:24 PM PDT by GGpaX4DumpedTea (I am a Tea Party descendant...steeped in the Constitutional Republic given to us by the Founders)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

I thought debt-bondage was outlawed by treaty.


13 posted on 04/13/2014 6:41:11 PM PDT by NonValueAdded (Operating out of weakness? Imagine if he was working from a position of strength!)
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To: lavaroise; babygene

“Also if both you and your spouse paid SS, only one gets a check. how about that.”

That is pure, unadultrated BS! I get a check, my wife gets a check. And when we applied for hers, they figured it several ways...her earnings, and her check based on my earnings. She gets more based on my earnings. WE BOTH GET A CHECK!


14 posted on 04/13/2014 6:42:26 PM PDT by GGpaX4DumpedTea (I am a Tea Party descendant...steeped in the Constitutional Republic given to us by the Founders)
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To: babygene

Let me rephrase that.

A woman who never worked gets her man’s SS after he died.

But a woman who contributed to SS has to choose whether to get her man’s or her’s, not both if he dies.


15 posted on 04/13/2014 6:43:19 PM PDT by lavaroise (A well regulated gun being necessary to the state, the rights of the militia shall not be infringed)
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To: GGpaX4DumpedTea

Not after one of you dies.


16 posted on 04/13/2014 6:44:18 PM PDT by lavaroise (A well regulated gun being necessary to the state, the rights of the militia shall not be infringed)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Are we quiet meek serfs? Controlled by mocking and shaming on tv?

When will we take back our free country?


17 posted on 04/13/2014 6:45:56 PM PDT by Yaelle
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Who voted for that farm bill???


18 posted on 04/13/2014 6:46:29 PM PDT by petitfour
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
Just more cases of “the rich” being expected to “pay their fair share”.Mitt Romney was able to get away with not paying taxes for 10 years (Dirty Harry says it,so it must be true) but *these” people won't.
19 posted on 04/13/2014 6:47:58 PM PDT by Gay State Conservative (Stalin Blamed The Kulaks,Obama Blames The Tea Party)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

You would think there is a statue of limitation on repayment.
Holding the children responsible for what happened to the parents is not going to go over well with the public.

BTW, what about underpayment. Will the government be sending out checks too?


20 posted on 04/13/2014 6:57:23 PM PDT by Fishing-guy
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