An Indiana man is very pissed at the IRS because, according to him, they say he’s dead and he’s not. This alleged bureaucratic snafu has allegedly prevented him from getting more than $10,000 through stimulus check(s) and tax refunds.
Speaking to WTHR, Bobby Musgrove says that the agency thinks he passed away two years ago. He said he learned about this via a letter from the Social Security Administration (SSA) that “wished to express condolences” about his death. He phoned his local Social Security office to alert them of the mistake, got a letter a month later with an apology, but still remains on the SSA Death Master File, which was shared with the IRS.
“It’s difficult to unwind the information once it’s in the IRS’s system that someone is dead,” said Leslie Book, a Villanova University law professor who also sits on the board of the Center for Taxpayer Rights and spoke to WTHR. “Whatever the source of the problem is, you’d think it would be easier to fix. That it’s persisted this long is troubling.”
Speaking of the five-figure total he believes he’s owed, Musgrove told WTHR “That’s a lot of income that I really need. I’m begging to be alive in the system and can’t do it.”
Musgrove has gone so far as to meet IRS officials in person, along with state ID, his tax returns, and his birth certificate. The IRS told him it was a problem that Social Security has to deal with. When he talked to Social Security they said he had to get it fixed with the IRS.
Musgrove’s plight is rare, but has happened to others. According to Newsweek, South Carolinian Cathy Celentano has dealt with similar bullshit, saying that she learned the IRS thought she was dead when filing her tax return last year. Just like Musgrove she’s had issues correcting the problem, and found she couldn’t get a stimulus check or file taxes. When she went to the tax service Jackson Hewitt she was told that “a couple” of people had also been declared dead.
Others sharing similar fates/headaches include two people in Kansas, a Knoxville, Tennessee woman, and a Philadelphia woman who the government thinks has been dead for more than a decade. In 2019 the latter person told the Philly Voice that she had visited IRS offices several times but was told to “wait.”
“Wait for what? How long will it take to go into their system and change a simple error?” she said. “My children and I are suffering at the hands of the IRS. Someone just needs to do their job and fix this! How much more do they need?”
All these people learned of their own deaths while filing their taxes. Risk karma hitting you every April by laughing at them at your own risk. Also this all sounds like an actual specific King of the Hill episode.