Tags: IG Report | Food | Stamp | Dead | peopel

IG Report: Dead People Redeemed More Than $2B in Food Stamp Benefits

Image: IG Report: Dead People Redeemed More Than $2B in Food Stamp Benefits

 (AP)

By    |   Saturday, 14 Jan 2017 12:32 PM

According to an inspector general report released this week, retailers registered with Social Security numbers matching those of dead people redeemed more than $2 billion in food stamp benefits.

"We found that 3,394 authorized SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program) retailers used Social Security Numbers (SSN) that matched SSNs of deceased people," the U.S. Department of Agriculture's inspector general said, reports The Washington Free Beacon.

Another 193 retailers listed owners who were not at least 18 years of age, the report showed.

According to the report, 3,394 stores were listed as being owned by 1,819 people who were using Social Security numbers that had been on the Social Security Administration's Death Master file, and redeemed about $2.6 billion in SNAP benefits. Meanwhile, another 193 businesses whose numbers came back to being registered to children.

Without accurate information, the nation's Food and Nutrition Service does not have assurance retailers are who they claim to be, the report said, which could "leave the program open to abuse by disqualified individuals and others wishing to hide their identity for possible fraudulent purposes," and FNS could have little recourse than to take action.

The SNAP program costs $70 billion per year while helping an average of 46 million Americans, reports The Free Beacon.

About 280,000 retailers responsible for $23 billion in food stamp transactions were reviewed.

So far, 147 owners were reviewed and 122 removed from the program.

In the remaining stores, seven are not allowed to redeem food stamps because of other violations.

Just 18 cases were found to be valid, including some where the owner had died but his or her spouse still operated the business.

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According to an inspector general report released this week, retailers registered with Social Security numbers matching those of dead people redeemed more than $2 billion in food stamp benefits.
IG Report, Food, Stamp, Dead, peopel
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2017-32-14
Saturday, 14 Jan 2017 12:32 PM
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