So you have received notice of an overpayment of your Social Security benefits according to the Social Security Administration (SSA) and you wonder what you should do? Of course the SSA is thorough in detailing the amount of the overpayment, why it was made, and ultimately how you can pay it back. Also included in the notice is your right to an appeal. First you may be wondering what events can precipitate an overpayment; they are many and varied: if you return back to work, marriage, clerical error, increased income, a change in your living situation, and a change in your disability status.
It is of the utmost importance that you do not ignore the notice of overpayment. As previously mentioned, you do have the right to appeal or challenge the decision; however you cannot be slow to act because this is a time sensitive matter. There are three options available to you if you decide to appeal and they are:
In order to have the amount of the overpayment recalculated because you feel the amount is not correct or you feel no overpayments were made, you must file a request for reconsideration. Again this request must be filed right away so that no money is taken out of your social security check.
If you understand there was an overpayment made but through no fault of your own and you have no way to pay the money back, you can petition the SSA to have the overpayment forgiven. Again, file this request immediately so that no money is taken out of your check. Be advised that you will have to demonstrate to the SSA that the excess payment was due to their error and you cannot afford the repayment.
If you agree that an overpayment was made you can file a waiver that will allow you to submit a monthly payment amount that aligns with your budget. While a decision is being made you may want to ask the SSA that no additional monies be taken out of your check.
If you do not feel comfortable doing this on your own, you can seek the advice of a Social Security Disability Lawyer.