Valley woman fights to get her birthdate changed

PHOENIX - What if the government told you your birth date was different from the date you've been celebrating all of your life?

It happened to one Valley woman and she let me know.

I first met Maud Bogan last year.

She's fun, feisty and determined to set the record straight about when she came into this world.

She claims that she was born in 1920. That made her 93 when I first met her.

She said she's "positive" that she was born in 1920. Absolutely sure.

But the government her her date listed as 1919, a full year earlier.

Maud said the different dates is causing problems for her Medicare coverage.

A birth certificate would solve this, but she doesn't have one. Maud was born in Mississippi, and not the way most of us are delivered today.

"I was born of a midwife and the midwife evidently never reported to the authorities," she said.

With no hospital and no official recording, Maud shows me bits and pieces of information showing her birth was in 1920.

"My baptism records, my marriage license, my passport, they all show that date," she says.

Somehow, the Social Security administration got hold of a different elementary school document.

"Whoever put me in school, put my age as 1919," she said.

Maud said it's the only document that lists the wrong date and she doesn't know how the Social Security Administration got a hold of it.

But the birth date discrepancy has become an issue because she said Medicare recently started paying part of her prescriptions after a separate coverage ended.

Now she said she's paying a lot more for those prescribed drugs.

We tried to get the Social Security Administration to look at her documents and change her birth date to 1920. But they told us the same thing they've told Maud again, and again.

The letter said "we are unable to do it because it would be very disadvantageous to you and cause a huge overpayment on your record."

Social Security said they've paid Maud based on a different date so she would be overpaid if that date changed. That meant she would actually owe money if they were to officially change her birth date.

Maud waited for an entire year looking for an update. Social Security didn't change the date, but her pharmacy did. That has allowed her to get her prescriptions paid the way she's wanted all along.

Maud Bogan is a great example of someone who didn't give up, fought an uphill battle and found a way to get the record fixed.

Need my help? Call 1-855-323-1515 and talk to the Assistance League of Phoenix volunteers live Wednesdays and Fridays 11-1. You can leave a message anytime.

You can also e-mail me, tweet me, or like my Let Joe Know Facebook page and tell me about it there.
 

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