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Phillips Esq.
Phillips Esq., Attorney-at-Law
Category: Social Security
Satisfied Customers: 18130
Experience:  B.A.; M.B.A.; J.D.
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Filed retirement benefits in Sept. 2004 at age 62, having

Customer Question

Filed for SS retirement benefits in Sept. 2004 at age 62, having lost my job in Feb. that year and unable to regain employment. SSA authorized $1518/ mo. beginning in October and subsequently increased to $1544/mo. in 2015. Now , however I receive notice that I am considered to have been overpaid for 2014, citing as a reason, earnings reported to be $24,440, as reported by my former employer. SSA now wishes to withhold $1544 in Dec. and $1245 in Jan. to pay back this supposed over payment. I have requested reconsideration in writing, within thirty days of the initial determination of an over payment, submitting also, documentation of the severance agreement from my former employer which included 2 times base pay,totaling $2203 and the additional sum of $6333 for years service. Although the request and documentation were received by SSA on Nov. 16, as per postal receipt, I have received no notification of any determination based upon reconsideration. Should the severance amounts not be exempt as earnings? Should I file request for waiver now, in case determination is not in my favor? SS is my only income and their repayment schedule would wipe me out.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Social Security
Expert:  Phillips Esq. replied 1 year ago.

Although the request and documentation were received by SSA on Nov. 16, as per postal receipt, I have received no notification of any determination based upon reconsideration.

Response 1: That is not enough time for SSA to review and act on your documents. You need to give SSA more time.

Should the severance amounts not be exempt as earnings?

Response 2: Yes, they should not be exempt. They are counted as your earnings from your employment. For more information, click on the link below:

https://www.ssa.gov/planners/retire/netearns.html

Should I file request for waiver now, in case determination is not in my favor? SS is my only income and their repayment schedule would wipe me out.

Response 3: No. You need to wait for SSA's decision. For more information, click here:

https://www.socialsecurity.gov/forms/ssa-632.html