Conn's Other Victims
Eric Conn, the flashy and arrogant attorney who billed himself as “Mr. Social Security,” is now behind bars where he belongs after spending seven months on the lam.
He entered guilty pleas for his pivotal role in a scheme that bilked the Social Security Administration (SSA) out of millions of dollars in false awards made possible by Conn, a dishonest judge and physicians who rubber stamped disability claims without proper verification.
However, some of the disability claims made by clients of Conn were legitimate, and because of the misdeeds of Conn, recipients are at risk of losing the benefits awarded them. In a sense, they are becoming just as much the victims of their attorney’s misdeeds as the SSA.
Because of Conn’s scheme, the SSA is tossing out some of the medical evidence supporting the awarding benefits to his clients. The SSA plans to have almost 2,000 of Conn’s clients go through the process of having an administrative law judge decide whether they are entitled to continue receiving a monthly disability check. Since Conn operated for a time in an office in Ashland, some of those clients live in this community.
The move by SSA to review the eligibility of so many former Conn clients has caused some dread in Eastern Kentucky. It could cost hundreds of people benefits in places where those payments are significant in the economy.