Butler County woman lied about husband to get $60K in Social Security benefits | TribLIVE.com

Butler County woman lied about husband to get $60K in Social Security benefits

Natasha Lindstrom

A Butler County woman has pleaded guilty to receiving more than $60,000 in fraudulent Social Security benefits by lying about her husband, federal prosecutors said Thursday.

Pattie Lou Smith, 56, of Connoquenessing admitted to making false reports to the federal government on documents required to determine eligibility for benefits between December 2013 through February 2017, U.S. Attorney Scott W. Brady said.

Supplemental Security Income, or SSI, gives cash benefits to meet basic needs paid to people with disabilities or seniors who have little to no income. The program is run by the Social Security Administration, but SSI is funded by general tax revenues, not Social Security taxes.

Marital status and monthly income affect the amounts distributed.

When first applying for SSI benefits and for more than three years after, Smith lied by reporting that her husband was not part of her household, Brady said.

Smith received more than $61,000 to which she was not entitled, according to her guilty plea.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Carolyn J. Bloch prosecuted the case with help from the Social Security Administration’s Office of Inspector General.

Smith is scheduled to be sentenced on Jan. 9.

Natasha Lindstrom is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Natasha at 412-380-8514, [email protected] or via Twitter .

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