Social Security fraud is relatively rare. Though occasionally individuals applying for benefits or receiving benefits intentionally commit fraud against the system, the vast majority of Social Security Disability (SSD) applicants and recipients legitimately qualify for their benefits. Unfortunately, stories of fraud can rock the system to its core from time to time, even if these stories are truly rare.
Recently, it was revealed that more than 100 individuals are under investigation for their possible involvement in a SSD fraud scheme. Surprisingly, a great number of the individuals under investigation are former members of the New York Police Department (NYPD) and the Fire Department, City of New York (FDNY). If the allegations against these individuals are true, many fraudulently applied for benefits, citing Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) from their experiences on 9/11 and at Ground Zero among their health-related claims.
To be clear, it is possible that some of the accused persons did experience trauma on 9/11 and/or at Ground Zero. However, the ways in which these police officers and firefighters sought to obtain benefits is so fraudulent as to undermine elements of their claims that may be true. Essentially, the case against these individuals insists that they were coached on how to seem panicked, disoriented and incapable of holding employment. However, their social media accounts showed many of them performing feats inconsistent with their claims.
If you wish to apply for SSD benefits, you must work with an experienced attorney in order to apply truthfully, honorably and completely. Failure to do so could lead your claim to be rejected, even if your disability is real. In addition, defrauding the system in any way could lead to serious consequences.