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LawTalk
LawTalk, Attorney
Category: Social Security
Satisfied Customers: 36387
Experience:  I have 30 years of legal and litigation experience, including representing clients before the U.S. Social Security Administration.
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I was incarcerated in 2011 for 5 years at which time my

Customer Question

I was incarcerated in 2011 for 5 years at which time my benefits were withheld for 5 years and 9 months . My question is since I was born in 1944 and paid into the system starting around 1959, am I excluded from the laws passed years afterwards that precluded that anyone incarcerated for a year or more will have his benefits suspended?
It would seem that I would be "grandfathered" into receiving my benifits and that I could argue the ex-post facto clause of the constitution...
Are there any case law relating to my particular argument????
Submitted: 4 months ago.
Category: Social Security
Expert:  Dr. Fiona Chen replied 4 months ago.

Dear Customer,

The argument on the government side is that [don't get mad at me] all your room and board and living expenses were paid by the government so that your social security retirement income was suspended but not medicare for medical. It is similar to someone is in long-term care facility paid by the government on medicaid, all social security income due to him/her is then paid over to the government and the individual is only allowed for monthly allowances for like $30 per month.

Please take a look of this 10 page publication from the SSA on the subject matter.

https://www.ssa.gov/pubs/EN-05-10133.pdf

Please make sure that you receive your social security currently, correctly to the largest benefit possible.

I don't know any case law to your argument. There is a good website for you to research further on case law.

That is Google Scholar. It allows for search on line free all cases and scholarly articles.

https://scholar.google.com/

Please feel free to follow up.

Regards,

Fiona

Fiona Chen, MPA, Ph.D., CPA, ABV, CFF, CITP

Customer: replied 4 months ago.
I understand the government's argument but I had to continue paying for my home including mortgage, insurance and maintenance , also a caretaker while I was incarcerated. And to add insult to injury, I lost my homestead exemption .. all in all, it cost me on average about $24,000 per year for 5 1/2 years or about $132,000 for the period...for the government to ignore the holding costs associated beyond the cost they claim it costs to "house" me...FYI I spent on average $300 a month not counting my family and friends travel,exp. etc to live in the center...for anyone to say it don't cost anything is playing ostrich and never been in jail before...
Thanks for your help, I still think I have a legitimate argument...
Expert:  LawTalk replied 4 months ago.

Good afternoon,

New professional here. I'm Doug, and I'm very sorry to hear of your situation. My goal is to provide you with excellent service today. I have been a licensed attorney for more than 3 decades. Please don't confuse excellent service with a satisfactory outcome based on your wants and desires. I can only explain the law to you---not guarantee that you will be happy with the outcome---any more than a cancer surgeon can guarantee a cure.

The law which effected you 5 years ago and which is still in effect holds that you are immediately ineligible for any social security benefits once you have been incarcerated for at least 30 days. There is no such thing as being grandfathered in on any law that may have been in effect decades ago.

Unfortunately, you do not have a legal leg to stand on and there is no case law to assist you because the 30 day rule is the law, and was the law when you were incarcerated.

You are not entitled to any benefits for the time you were incarcerated. I'm sorry.

I understand that you may be disappointed by the Answer you received, as it was not particularly favorable to your situation. Had I been able to provide an Answer which might have given you a successful legal outcome, it would have been my pleasure to do so.

If you have additional questions, you may of course reply back to me and I will be happy to continue to assist you further until your questions have been answered to your satisfaction.

Would you please take a moment to positively rate my service to you based on the understanding of the law I provided by clicking on the rating stars---preferably five stars. It is that easy. That is the way I am compensated for having helped you.

Thank you in advance. I wish you the best in your future,

Doug