Kokomo Tribune; Kokomo, Indiana

Bonus content

April 15, 2014

People with old Social Security debts get reprieve

WASHINGTON (AP) — People with old Social Security debts are getting a reprieve — for now.

The Social Security Administration had been participating in a program in which thousands of people were having their tax refunds seized to recoup overpayments that happened more than a decade ago.

On Monday, Acting Social Security Commissioner Carolyn W. Colvin said she was suspending the program while the agency conducts a review.

Social Security recipients and members of Congress complained that people were being forced to repay overpayments that were sometimes paid to their parents or guardians when they were children.

The Social Security Administration says it has identified about 400,000 people with old debts. They owe a total of $714 million.

So far, the agency says it has collected $55 million, mainly by having the Treasury Department seize tax refunds.

Colvin said she was suspending the program "pending a thorough review of our responsibility and discretion under the current law to refer debt to the Treasury Department."

"If any Social Security or Supplemental Security Income beneficiary believes they have been incorrectly assessed with an overpayment under this program, I encourage them to request an explanation or seek options to resolve the overpayment," Colvin said.

The program was authorized by a 2008 change in the law that allows Social Security and other federal agencies, through the Treasury, to seize federal payments to recoup debts that are more than 10 years old. Previously, there was a 10-year limit on using the program.

In most cases, the seizures are tax refunds.

The Washington Post first reported on the program.

Democratic Sens. Senators Barbara Boxer of California and Barbara Mikulski of Maryland complained about the program in a letter to Colvin.

"While this policy of seizing tax refunds to repay decades-old Social Security overpayments might be allowed under the law, it is entirely unjust," the senators wrote.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Bonus content
  • Emmys-Robin Williams [Duplicate] Emmys: Billy Crystal to pay tribute to Williams LOS ANGELES (AP) — Billy Crystal will pay tribute to Robin Williams, his longtime friend and fellow comedian, at next week's Emmy Awards. Crystal will honor Williams as part of the traditional "in memoriam" segment for industry members who died durin

    August 21, 2014 1 Photo

  • Slain journalist spent time with Indiana troops INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — The American journalist beheaded by the Islamic State extremist group had gone to Iraq with Indiana National Guard soldiers during a 2008 deployment. James Foley was embedded with members of the Indiana Guard's 76th Infantry Briga

    August 21, 2014

  • Hundreds attend vigil for missing SW Indiana women BOONVILLE (AP) — A few hundred people gathered at a prayer vigil for women missing in southwestern Indiana, including a 27-year-old mother of two children who was last seen nearly a week ago. Many in the crowd outside the Warrick County Courthouse in

    August 21, 2014

  • Missing American-Syria-6 [Duplicate] Slain American journalist remembered as driven ROCHESTER, N.H. (AP) — In 2011, just after James Foley was released from the Libyan prison where he'd been held for six weeks, he acknowledged the peril journalists face covering the world's most dangerous places, soberly conceding that a mistake cou

    August 21, 2014 7 Photos

  • Man rides stolen shopping scooter to probation meeting ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — An Albuquerque, New Mexico, man is facing charges after police say he drove a stolen electric shopping cart to meet with his probation officer. KOAT-TV reports court papers say 18-year-old Michael Johnson rode the electric s

    August 20, 2014

  • Police have beef with man accused of being meat thief PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — Police have a beef with a man they say stole meat worth $2,700 from three Safeway stores in Portland, Oregon. Police say 53-year-old Barry T. Sanders was caught on video hiding meat in a shopping cart at least 13 times in July

    August 20, 2014

  • Police Shooting Missouri-3 [Duplicate] Latest Ferguson protests are smaller, more subdued FERGUSON, Mo. (AP) — Police and protesters in Ferguson were finally able to share the streets again at night, putting aside for at least a few hours some of the hostility that had filled those hours with tear gas and smoke. The St. Louis suburb stil

    August 20, 2014 7 Photos

  • Back To School Charter School City [Duplicate] 10 Things to Know for Today Your daily look at late-breaking news, upcoming events and the stories that will be talked about today: 1. U.S. HAS NO GOOD OPTION TO PROTECT SECOND JOURNALIST HOSTAGE After the Islamic State beheaded reporter James Foley, the White House must decid

    August 20, 2014 3 Photos

  • Britain Talking Statues-6 [Duplicate] Ring, ring: London statues want to talk to you LONDON (AP) — Calling all London tourists: Peter Pan, Sherlock Holmes and Queen Victoria want to have a word with you. A new interactive arts project is giving a voice to dozens of statues of historical and fictional characters in London, allowing t

    August 20, 2014 5 Photos

  • Kids Killed Driver Shot-9 [Duplicate] Prosecutor: Father shooting driver was 'execution' ANGLETON, Texas (AP) — A drunken driver did not deserve "execution" by a Texas father accused of taking the law into his own hands in a fit of rage over the killing of his two sons in a wreck, a prosecutor told jurors on Tuesday. David Barajas is ac

    August 19, 2014 6 Photos

Latest news
Featured Ads
Only on our website
AP Video
US: We Do Not Pay Ransom to Terrorists Ferguson Teachers Training to Deal With Trauma Jon Hamm on the Unrest in Ferguson Tit for Tat? McDonald's Shuttered in Moscow Life on the Professional Video Game Circuit TX Gov Perry in Washington: 'Confident' in Case Hospital Releases Two Missionaries Who Had Ebola Ramen Health Risks: The Dark Side of the Noodle NYC Doctor-in-chief Seeks Community Approach Indonesian Police Fire Tear Gas at Protesters Raw: Shots Fired in Liberian Shantytown DOJ, Bank of America Reach Record Settlement Raw: Cubavision Airs Images of Fidel Castro Raw: Grief After Deadly Airstrikes in Gaza Officer Who Pointed Gun at Protesters Suspended Kathy Griffin Challenges Minaj to 'a Booty Off' Johnson: Six Arrests, No Tear Gas in Ferguson Raw: Rescue, Relief Efforts at Japan Landslide Cadavers, a Teen, and a Medical School Dream California Drought Stings Honeybees, Beekeepers
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
Obituaries
Poll
Kelly Lafferty's video on Tom Miller