Sometimes Social Security pays people more benefits than they were supposed to. They call it overpayment. In most cases, the claimant (person who filed for benefits) must pay back the overpayment, but there are exceptions. For example, for some types of cases, the Social Security Administration will waive any attempt to recover overpayment if an individual is without fault and recovery would defeat the purpose of the supplemental security income program or SSI (CFR § 416.553)
You can file an appeal if you think you were not overpaid, or if you think the overpayment amount is incorrect. There is also a way to request paying back the overpayment at a rate you can afford. You will have 60 days to file an appeal saying that you were not overpaid after you've received the notice.
In addition to an appeal, you can file a waiver. This is when you admit that you were overpaid but that it wasn't your fault and cannot afford to pay it back. There is no time limit to requesting a waiver.
The Social Security Administration will probably ask for proof of income and expenses to prove that you can’t afford to pay back the overpayment. Otherwise, the overpayment could be taken over time from your monthly benefits, or federal income tax.
If you’ve been contacted by the Social Security Administration about an overpayment, it is a time sensitive issue, so give us a call today.