Earlier this summer I wrote about the thousands of inmates who received the new home buyer tax credit.
Now a new federal audit finds that last year “The federal government last year sent about 89,000 checks of $250 each to dead or incarcerated people.”
The Social Security Administration distributed about $13 billion to 52 million eligible beneficiaries in the form of $250 checks as part of the economic recovery program. The program cost $814 billion. Most of the payments were issued properly, but SSA failed to check all available payment records or was unaware that beneficiaries had died, according to a report by the Social Security Office of Inspector General.
About 71,600 recipients were dead before SSA certified their payments, receiving a total of $18 million, according to the report. Another 17,300 inmates received a total of $4.3 million.
There was never an intent to give stimulus money to inmates however the Wall Street Journal reports, “the law included only a provision prohibiting payments to people incarcerated in the three months before the plan was passed—from November 2008 through January 2009.”
“The report Thursday said that of these payments, about 55,000 were sent because the recipients had died recently, and the Social Security Administration had not been informed of their deaths by states, families or funeral homes at the time the payments were sent,” according to the WSJ.
41,000 of those payments were returned.