Is the Railroad Retirement Board Doing Enough to Protect Against Fraud?

Hearing Date: May 1, 2015 9:30 am 2154 Rayburn House Office Building

WASHINGTON –Tomorrow, Friday, May 1st, the House Oversight and Government Reform Subcommittee on Government Operations will hold a hearing titled “Is the Railroad Retirement Board Doing Enough to Protect Against Fraud?” The hearing will examine the Railroad Retirement Board (RRB) occupational disability program and assess the RRB’s process for determining which workers are benefits eligible.

HEARING BACKGROUND:

  • From the late 1990s through 2008, as many as 1,500 retirees conspired with several physicians, a union official, and a former RRB manager to submit false disability claims worth as much as $1 billion.  Subsequently, the RRB Office of the Inspector General (OIG) and the Government Accountability Office (GAO) both made recommendations to improve RRB’s process for approving disability applications.
  • On February 10, 2014, the Committee received a seven-day letter from RRB Inspector General Martin J. Dickman that described dangerous weaknesses in the occupational disability approval process that remain largely unaddressed.  According to Dickman, the method of granting occupational disability payments to former employees of the Long Island Rail Road is seriously flawed, and the current approval rate remains as high as it was before a fraud ring was exposed more than five years ago.  Dickman recommended that, unless the RRB implemented significant changes quickly, the occupational disability program be terminated or severely cut back.

Witnesses and testimonies

Name Title Organization Panel Document
Martin J. Dickman Inspector General Railroad Retirement Board
Michael S. Schwartz Chairman Railroad Retirement Board
Daniel Bertoni Director, Education, Workforce, and Income Security U.S. Government Accountability Office

Related Documents

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Transcript Document