Obama Decision Enabled Social Security Fraud

Press Releases

April 16, 2018

IRLI sues Social Security Administration for records on ‘no-match’ letters

WASHINGTON – The Immigration Reform Law Institute (IRLI), on behalf of the Federation for American Immigration Reform, recently filed suit against the Social Security Administration (SSA), seeking records related to its Obama-era decision to halt sending “no-match” letters to employers. The long-held practice of sending the letters had been used to prevent fraud through the use of stolen Social Security number (SSN) data by illegal aliens and other criminals.

The SSA has estimated that three out of every four illegal aliens possess a SSN, which had either been stolen from an American citizen or legal resident or simply made up. Although almost never reported on, when illegal aliens steal a SSN, the consequences can be very serious for the legitimate user. On top of receiving IRS letters and audits accusing them of having income they are not claiming or having their benefits blocked, reconciling a compromised identifier is estimated to cost thousands of dollars and take years of effort.

The purpose of the “no-match” letters was to inform employers and employees, usually in response to an employee wage report, that the name or SSN reported by the employer for one or more employees, did not match a name or SSN combination reflected in SSA’s records. While the SSA sent no-match letters to employers and employees for decades to rectify mismatched SSNs and names, the Obama administration decided to discontinue the practice.

“Ending the no-match letters policy was yet another disastrous move by the previous administration and allowed unscrupulous employers to exploit illegal aliens while avoiding prosecution by federal authorities,” said Dale L. Wilcox, executive director and general counsel of IRLI. “It also caused great damage in the lives of those who had their personal data stolen and used to enable further violations of our immigration laws. The American people deserve to know the facts behind why this decision was made.”

The case is FAIR v. Social Security Administration, No. 18-0849 (U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia).

For additional information, contact: Brian Lonergan • 202-232-5590 • [email protected]

Get Connected

Sign up for our email newsletter to stay up to date with immigration reform in the United States.

Attorneys United for a Secure America (AUSA) is a non-partisan affiliation of talented attorneys dedicated to pursuing cases that serve the national interest when it comes to immigration law.

If you are interested in joining the network, visit the AUSA website.