Ask Larry

Is My Payee Legally Liable For My Debts?

I was on SSDI FROM APRIL 2004
Until my first retirement Ck 4 2021
I had a payee in my SSDI. Would like to know why and what diagnosis was given
My son after his fathers death took over
He is now telling that since he is still a payee. I can’t get ahold of doc sec I have left my number 26 times stayed on hold for 2 hours
To find this out. If I want to purchase a car. Is he legally liable for my debt which I have perfect credit

Hi. No. Social Security generally only appoints a representative payee to handle a person's benefits if they are either legally incompetent or if the person's doctor believes that they are not capable of managing benefits in their best interests. I don't know which of those circumstances applies in your case. If you're legally incompetent, then Social Security would be prevented by law from paying your benefits directly to you. But, if you're not legally incompetent then you could potentially be appointed as your own payee if you file an application and if your doctor(s) believes you are capable of properly handling your own benefits.

Representative payees are not legally liable for the debts of a person for whom they are acting as payee. The representative payee's responsibility is to use the incapable person's benefits to pay for the person's current needs, and to conserve any excess funds for the beneficiary's future needs ( If the payee is the legal guardian of a legally incompetent person, then they may have additional legal responsibilities stated in the court order appointing them as legal guardian. Your representative payee could potentially agree to use your Social Security funds to buy you a car if he or she believes that would be in your best interest and if you have adequate funds available for such a purpose. But, it would be up to your payee to make that decision.

Best, Jerry

Apr 9 2021 - 9:14am
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