Stimulus Program Sent Checks to 89,000 Dead, Incarcerated People

The federal government sent out checks to 89,000 dead or incarcerated people in 2009 as part of the $814 billion stimulus program, a watchdog reported.

One component of the stimulus plan was the distribution of $13 billion by the Social Security Administration, The Washington Post said. The money was to go to 52 million eligible beneficiaries in checks of $250 each.

The SSA did not check available payment records or was unaware that some of the beneficiaries were dead, according to a report by the Social Security Office of Inspector General.

Some of the dead individuals had not received benefits in 30 years, and would be as old as 136 if they were alive today.

The stimulus act only barred people who were incarcerated in the months leading up to the act's passage, meaning other inmates did receive checks. The SSA normally suspends payments when a beneficiary is incarcerated.

"Inaccurate payments are unacceptable. Social Security's Recovery Act payments were 99.8 percent accurate, and we quickly collected the majority of the inaccurate payments," SSA spokesman Mark Lassiter said.

Just over half the payments have been returned.

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knute9

The typical government scam with no repercussions. I have come to the conclusion that organized crime has taken over our politics and government.

October 10 2010 at 9:15 PM Report abuse +4 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to knute9's comment
a324tony

The people we elect make the mob look like boy scouts. At least the mob is up front as to whom you are dealing with.

October 11 2010 at 8:55 AM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
chrissf4529

First "baming" our President for this makes you look foolish. On the other hand, this is the same beauracracy that wants to run our healthcare. "clerks" making life and death choices. When they do not even have enough brains to validate if a person is still alive.

October 10 2010 at 12:38 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
jdrabe

testing

October 10 2010 at 11:15 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to jdrabe's comment
jdrabe

testing some more

October 10 2010 at 11:15 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
a324tony

Checks to dead people. I understand how they made this mistake. They used the voter registration records supplied to them by ACORN.

October 10 2010 at 10:06 AM Report abuse +10 rate up rate down Reply
robertarome

False disability claims....Millions of healthy young Americans taking welfare benefits instead of working.....hundreds of thousands of lawsuits falsely filed against doctors and companies for injuries....Abuse of credit and filing of bankruptcy by those who spend what they do not have.....Billions of dollars in medical claims it is now costing companies and the tax payers, filed each year by morbidly obese workers.....During the depression and World War II families made sacrifices most Americans could not even comprehend, let alone deal with themselves today. Yes, our government is partially responsible for the slow and deliberate destruction of this once great nation. "We the People" need to shoulder a large amount of the blame ourselves for decades of greed, fiscal irresponsibility, and for relying on the government to coddle us. We have helped turn our nation into a Cradle to the Grave ideological nightmare and we can point the finger all we want, but, it all comes down to decades of national apathy.

October 10 2010 at 9:09 AM Report abuse +7 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to robertarome's comment
Keith Webster

You are absolutely correct. Nobody wants to hear the truth.

October 10 2010 at 6:04 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply
pabrat73

where is ken starr when we need him i say impeach now why wait till 2012

October 10 2010 at 8:37 AM Report abuse +4 rate up rate down Reply
Debbie

Someone is going to read this and say I am biased, so be it. If the leadership that we have in office now remains there will be more of these tiny slip ups. The reason none of them want you to read any of the bills they are putting up for vote is to prevent you from finding the "PORK" that is in each one, as well as the approval for them to take away more of our rights. The only chance of survival is to make certain that you get out and vote this Nov. It concerns me not how you vote, that is your decision. Let me point out though if they said that they did not have the time to read a bill but passed it anyway, are they really standing up for your interests?

October 09 2010 at 7:07 PM Report abuse +10 rate up rate down Reply
tymicha3

Did I just get zapped AOL? Thats o.k., I'll get over my right to free speech discounted. Love you folks.

October 09 2010 at 5:50 PM Report abuse +7 rate up rate down Reply
tymicha3

I realize dead people probably should not have received a check. I mean, they would really have to dig themselves out of a hole to go cash it, unless they still have direct deposit. I don't see why the incarcerated should not receive a check though. If they paid into the fund, what difference does it make where they are residing? This kind of blows my retirement plan all to hell. I figured I would do some non violent kind of crime, do four or five years in the pen, and come out with a nice little nest egg. Shoot, now it makes no sense to rob that little bank with a banana in my pocket. Guess I have to apply for that Wal-Mart greeter job again. Life sucks and then you die.

October 09 2010 at 5:44 PM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply
fortadogarmany

Hey I never received a damn stimulus check last year!!!! Maybe I should have been locked up!!!!!

October 09 2010 at 5:20 PM Report abuse +5 rate up rate down Reply