$600 Million In Government Benefits Sent To Dead People
Is it any wonder no one can balance the federal budget?
The federal government has doled out more than $600 million in benefit payments to dead people over the past five years, a watchdog report says.
Such payments are meant for retired or disabled federal workers, but sometimes the checks keep going out even after the former employees pass away and the deaths are not reported, according to the report this week from the Office of Personnel Management’s inspector general, Patrick McFarland.
Oh, but of course, these dead people only get one or two payments before their deaths are reported and the benefits stop, right?
In one case, the son of a beneficiary continued receiving payments for 37 years after his father’s death in 1971. The payments – totaling more than $515,000 – were only discovered when the son died in 2008.
Okay, but this is a new thing, it’s not like the federal government has known about this problem before, right?
The government has been aware of the problem since a 2005 inspector general’s report revealed defects in the Civil Service Retirement and Disability Fund. Yet the improper payments have continued, despite more than a half dozen attempts to develop a system that can figure out which beneficiaries are still alive and which are dead, the report said.
One suspects that the real reason that the payments haven’t stopped is because if they stopped, certain voters might not vote for politicians of a certain party that’s dedicated to income redistribution.