Department of the Treasury

Stop improper payments to the deceased!

Reduce improper payments to federal benefit recipients made after death by electronically capturing their death notification from funeral homes (within 48 hours) and consolidated “Do Not Pay” databases, electronically match to their payment files, and stop the payment before it is disbursed. Improper payments reported after the recipients’ death by the four federal benefit agencies (SSA, OPM, VA, and RRB) in FY07, FY08, and FY09 totaled $355 million, $338 million, and $320 million respectively. Over the three year period, $159.6 million was not recovered at year end. The proposed plan could have stopped 80% of these improper payments at an $810 million savings, plus an estimated $116 million in unrecovered funds. Substantial savings from other federal agencies’ improper payments as well as the timely notification of unreported deaths also exists. Development and implementation costs of $2.5 million are offset by the savings. But the savings to the government will continue forever! The proposed plan is complete and available upon request.

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Idea No. 7640