It seems like many spouses complain that their partners don’t listen to them or do what they are asked to do, but Stephen Schwartz must have been really bad at following instructions and ignoring that honey do list. Bad enough, at least, for Rebekkah Schwartz to feel that her husband should qualify for disability benefits. In 2016, Stephen Schwartz was seeking reinstatement for disability benefits and asked his wife to help fill out the Expedited Reinstatement Request Form. Mrs. Schwartz filled out the claim stating that her husband could not “drive a big truck, keep log books, follow map/directions . . . carry on a conversation, count, concentrate, [and] follow instructions . . . .”
Well, all fraudsters have trouble following instructions but that doesn’t qualify them for any social security benefits. On July 6, 2022, Mr. and Mrs. Schwartz were found guilty of Theft of Government Funds and Aiding and Abetting in the amount of $167,756 for disability pay.
In 2017, the SSA did reinstate Mr. Schwartz’s disability benefits from 2016 forward, basing the decision on Mrs. Schwartz’s plea. However, while Mr. Schwartz might not have followed instructions, he could still drive a truck. While Mr. Schwartz was receiving his newly reinstated disability benefits, he was working as a driver for a roofing company. The money he earned from the roofing company was paid directly to Mrs. Schwartz to hide his income from the SSA.
Both Mr. and Mrs. Schwartz have been sentenced to 6 months prison time followed by three years of supervised release. Hopefully these two are also banned from ever receiving government benefits again.
Today’s “Fraud of the Day” is based on an article posted by Forth Smith Times Record on July 6, 2022
Fort Smith couple sentenced in scam against Social Security
A Fort Smith husband and his wife have been sentenced to six months in prison after their guilty pleas on charges alleging a scheme to collect money fraudulently from the Social Security Administration.
Stephen Wayne Schwartz, age 55, was sentenced to 6 months in prison followed by three years of supervised release and Rebekah Jolea Schwartz, age 44, was sentenced to 6 months in prison followed by three years of supervised release. They were ordered to pay restitution, jointly and severally, to the Social Security Administration, according to the U.S. Attorney’s office for the Western District of Arkansas.