SSA Head Speaks on Clawbacks: ‘Just Doesn’t Seem Right or Fair’

The Social Security Administration (SSA) has faced a great deal of scrutiny from citizens and officials alike due to its recent overpayments.

These errors were problematic on multiple fronts. For one, they showed a great deal of financial irresponsibility in a program that’s already teetering toward insolvency. But the impact they had on citizens was even worse.

However, the new SSA head, Commissioner Martin O’Malley, has spoken directly about this issue. He’s made his opinion clear about the matter, and what’s more, he’s vowed to take action and fix the problem.

SSA Head Calls Clawback History ‘Cruel-Hearted’

Here at The Seniors Center, we’ve covered the ongoing struggles of seniors affected by overpayments. Some of them were overpaid through no fault of their own. This has left them struggling to pay back tens of thousands of dollars. Some have been left homeless as their financial struggles overwhelmed them.

It’s a cruel twist that the program meant to protect seniors is now victimizing them. In an interview with KFF Health News, Commissioner O’Malley said:

“We do have the ability and we do have the authority to address many of these injustices.”

Injustice is one word he used to describe the previous processes the SSA took to recover money paid out by mistake. He also called it “cruel-hearted and mindless,” sentiments that seem to ring true given the way these problems have affected seniors.

So how will the situation shape up now that new leadership is on the case? As we’ve mentioned previously, improvements are already being made. Some seniors have had their debts forgiven. In addition, new policies have been proposed to stop these errors from happening in the first place.

Do you think this problem will be resolved, and a new era of efficiency is ahead for the SSA, at least in terms of correcting clawback methods, or even eliminating overpayments altogether? What else could be done to help with this problem? Share your thoughts.