Every year the social security administration receives nearly 2.8 million death reports and a new study has revealed that for every 200 legitimate death reports they receive, they accidentally mark one very much alive person as dead.
The study found that 14,000 living citizens are marked as dead each year because information is incorrectly entered into the agencies Death Master File.
The Death Master File contains names, birth dates, zip codes, last-known residences and other information for 87 million deceased Americans.
If you tally those numbers that means the agency is killing off 38 people each day, at least on paper.
While the death may just be a simple error it can cause undo hardship for those people affected, in their most recent evaluation of the system the Inspector General said:
“Erroneous death entries can lead to benefit termination, cause severe financial hardship and distress to affected individuals, and result in the publication of living individuals’ [personal identifying information] in the [Death Master File].”
The worst part for many people who are declared dead however is reclaiming their lives, the Social Security Administration is a bloated agency with nearly no checks and balances, do a quick Google search and you’ll hear horror stories about people who spent years repairing their lives because of stupid mistakes entered into an archaic database. One thing you wont hear however are stories about apologies from the agency, in fact if someone on disability benefits is claimed as dead, they will begin receiving payments once again when they are resurrected by the agency, however back pay is not provided during the time they did not receive payments.
The worst part? The incompetent information collected by the administration is sold to public organizations, banks and credit bureaus.