Consumer Facts for Older Americans: When Your Social Security Benefits are Taken to Pay Back Money to the Federal Government

Social Security income is a lifeline for most seniors. Because it is considered so essential for survival, it has traditionally been protected from attachment by creditors. A 1996 law takes away some of this protection, but only when federal government agencies are collecting debts owed to them. This is an important change to the law, but it is not a reason for panic. It will not apply to everyone and not all benefits can be taken. This information sheet answers some frequently asked questions about this new program...

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