An audit of the Massachusetts Department of Transitional Assistance (DTA) issued Tuesday revealed millions of dollars in “questionable benefits,” including millions paid out to dead people.
According to Massachusetts State Auditor Suzanne M. Bump, the audit identified 1,164 cases in which welfare recipients continued to receive benefits from six to 27 months after they had died. These dead individuals received $2.39 million in total.
In most of the cases the auditors sampled, deceased individuals’ Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) cards was discovered to still be in use — thus leading to the assumption that people other than the intended recipients were using the benefits.
Additionally, the audit revealed that DTA paid out at least $368,000 in benefits to 178 guardians who were claiming dead individuals as dependents. In another category, auditors found 40 benefit recipients who were being claimed by more than one guardian.