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Not sure where to put this but since it's related to income I'm choosing here. I have gotten two letters from SSA were just weird and calling clarified nothing.

I collect from my husband's account as a survivor(because it should always be more than just mine). The first letter said they were reducing my benefit by $117 beginning Dec 2018. Then they said they would send $9 which was due me through Feb. and after that they list an amount that is $3 more than I was getting.
[I called and the person couldn't explain the reason or the math]

I just got a second letter stating "Our records show that your Social Security benefits are affected because you receive a federal, state or local pension based on your own earnings. The most recent information we have indicates you receive a gross monthly pension of $175.40 effective May 2016."
[Not true and & called to see where the phantom pension was coming from and they couldn't tell me but insisted the annuity/pension from my husband's former employer was required information and I'd better send it in.]

I have thought long and hard about both of our former employers and there shouldn't be a pension from anywhere else. The amount I get from his former company was set when he died in 2011 and will never change.

Then I began to think and wonder if any of this has to do with what they will charge me for Medicare when I am eligible in August. I did send money and filed an extension for my 2019 tax return.

I can file an appeal but I really don't know what I am appealing.

Clues ?
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Try calling again. Maybe another person can explain the phantom pension and ask to be escalated to the next level of support if they can't explain it.
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I have thought long and hard about both of our former employers and there shouldn't be a pension from anywhere else.

Is it possible that between mergers and spin-offs that some small part of one of your pensions would be coming from another company? My first job out of college had a pension that I qualified for. Before I started working for them, the company had originally been purchased by mega-corp A, but still remained it's own division. Apparently the pension obligations were rolled into the parent company's obligations, though. Then mega-corp A got purchased by mega-corp B, which again kept my old company as it's own division, but it apparently also assumed the pension obligations as part of the parent company. My old company's division was then spun off from mega-corp B as it's own stand-alone company (like it had started out many years before) about 6 or 7 years later. However, the pension obligation stayed with mega-corp B. I only ever worked for the company when it was part of mega-corp A. But now, even though I never worked for mega-corp B, I will start collecting a pension from them when I turn 62.

Given that there were several bursts of M&A activity, and then subsequent spin-offs, over the past 30 - 40 years, it might be possible that you are owed a pension from a company that neither of you ever worked for.

AJ
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I have had 4 weirdnesses with Social Security. I have found the people in local offices to be amazingly dogged at getting to the bottom of issues and resolving problems. For two of my issues the local people escalated my issue to specialists.

In Atlanta the best way was contact the national office to get a local office appointment. In December 2017 we moved 3 counties away from Atlanta and I just walked into the office last fall - had a 45 minute wait.
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Composite response.

Given that there were several bursts of M&A activity, and then subsequent spin-offs, over the past 30 - 40 years, it might be possible that you are owed a pension from a company that neither of you ever worked for.

Back in the olden days, it was 10 years to vest anywhere and the letters were clear about it being public. This was still good advice in general. While my husband's longest tenure at a job was the last one(25 years), the one before that was at a company that was sliced and diced in the 80's.

Try calling again. Maybe another person can explain the phantom pension and ask to be escalated to the next level of support if they can't explain it.

I did this at a different time of day with the intention of making an appointment(although that was really nothing I wanted to spend my time doing.) Maybe because of the time of day but I was routed to a different center and person. There were no notes in my file concerning the other two calls(those people seemed only to be able/willing to read from a script). This person listened and went through everything she had and requested research on the issue. It is likely related to my employment covered by the Colorado pension system. I rolled out the money around 2003 but during that time(about a total of 6 nonconsecutive years), there were early years where social security wasn't withheld.

Because I am collecting as a survivor(and pretty much that will always be the highest amount), the phantom pension of mine is complicated.

Colorado and Pennsylvania confirmed I am due nothing from either.

This is all over about $130/month...or $3....or 175....depending on which letter, none of which will change my life.
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