Several weeks ago, hundreds of former New York police officers and firefighters were indicted on charges of Social Security Disability Fraud. Estimates show these individuals may have collected more than $400 million in improper Social Security Disability payments over the past 13 years, making the case one of the largest scams in the program’s history.
The case leaves many citizens wondering what can be done to prevent such incidents from occurring in the future. An administrative law judge who oversees Social Security Disability cases recently offered several suggestions on how to address the problems of fraud within the Social Security system in an article published by The New York Times.
The suggestions the judge is offering include:
- Create More Transparency– The indicted individuals were caught after posting pictures of themselves engaging in numerous activities a person who is unable to work should not be participating in. Yet, the law prohibits judges from examining social media during a case.
- Allow The Social Security Administration An Attorney– While those filing claims have a right to legal representation, the government does not have attorneys to defend their position in Social Security Disability claims that go to court.
- Change Leadership Strategies– The SSA is currently overseen by an acting commissioner. Hiring someone who has been involved in the system would drastically improve processes.
The Social Security Disability Lawyers with Fleschner, Stark, Tanoos & Newlin are curious if the public believes these changes would be effective in preventing fraud.