Supplemental Security Income Overpayments Pending a Collection Determination by the Social Security Administration

Tuesday, September 22, 2015
Report Number: 
Report Type: 
Audit Report
Office Affiliation: 

Because Supplemental Security Income (SSI) is a needs-based program, the Social Security Administration (SSA) must evaluate recipients’ income and resources each month to determine payment eligibility and amounts. Recipients’ failure to report changes in financial circumstances timely can result in incorrect payments.

SSA’s overpayment collection process depends on the individual’s eligibility status. If the individual continues receiving SSI payments, SSA should begin recovery by withholding from ongoing payments. If the individual is no longer receiving SSI payments, SSA should attempt collection through withholding from ongoing payments to a liable representative payee, direct written or telephone contact, billing, negotiated installment agreements, cross-program recovery, referral for external collection, or reporting the individual to credit bureaus.

In this report, we sought to determine whether SSA had taken actions since December 31, 2013 to collect outstanding SSI overpayments.