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Roger, Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 31781
Experience:  BV Rated by Martindale-Hubbell; SuperLawyer rating by Thompson-Reuters
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Okay, so last year my work got slow. I'm a sole proprietor

Customer Question

Okay, so last year my work got slow. I'm a sole proprietor and paint houses in the state of Mississippi. I work with/for another guy that pays me by personal check and cash, then I get a 1099 at the end of the year and I pay my own taxes. My wife is disabled with a mental health disability. Last year I had to have surgery and missed over a month of work. My wife got worried and applied for snap benefits on her own. "She doesn't always communicate what or why she plans to do very well." So I find out we have these food stamps while I'm out for surgery and she says everything is fine and she's taken care of it. So I go back to work and never think twice about it. About 4 months later she gets a letter saying to reapply but never does so the benefits stopped. "She never tells me about this letter and when I question her she honestly can't remember half of the process even leading up to that letter. I believe her because for 3 years now she has problems with memory, judgement, communication, facts in general, so I take care of all the bills and important phone calls. Except this one she did on her own and I found out after the fact. She also stops taking her medication on her own and doesn't say anything. I believe she was being honest and meant well." So that was in 2014. We get a letter last week saying we more than likely owe for snap over payments because of new information they had. "This is the first I'm aware of this, other than her word, I know it sounds naive on my part but I've been busy like crazy with surgeries and working I just say okay and don't look up." So now they say they are doing an investigation and will let us know something soon. My wife calls the man and says she honestly can't remember dates and facts and she will do whatever she can to help and cooperate. The man tells her the name of the man who payed me last year by 1099 and wants his phone number. Okay, so this guy is okay to work with/for and has a lot of work but to be blunt he's totally against any government assistance and talks openly about it at work. He loathes it. So, if this guy finds out we did receive assistance I'm afraid he'll tell me there is no more work...even though there is. I essentially don't have employee rights here etc. What can I do? Obviously we were over payed...My wife can't even tell me exactly what she put on the application, and I'm thinking everything is fine until now. Is this fraud, even though not intended? I've tried to look at stuff online but I'm even more confused and afraid for both of us. I'm willing and ready to pay anything back that was over payed and admit I was naive and my wife has a mental health diagnoses. I have my taxes from last adjusted gross income is less than what the 1099 says I was paid. Any help would be appreciated.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Legal
Expert:  Roger replied 1 year ago.

Hi - my name is ***** ***** I'm a lawyer in Mississippi. I'll be glad to assist.

The bot***** *****ne is that you're not an employee and have no employment benefits (there aren't many, anyway, in Mississippi). Also, if you don't have a written contract as an independent contractor with this contractor, you're obviously not entitled to any work or guarantee of future work. Thus, there's not much you can do about this guy and how he may react to this issue.

But, if you have a 1099, that should prove all of the income you had from this guy and would really negate the need to talk to him.....but obviously, they have some motivation.

Expert:  Roger replied 1 year ago.

In any event, the agency will likely offer to allow her/you to repay the overpayment over time and avoid any other penalties.

Expert:  Roger replied 1 year ago.

That's the main objective at this juncture......just do what you can to resolve the benefit overpayments as that's really all you can control.