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Disfigured Veteran Punished By Government For Working, Was Told To Pay Back $96,000

May 17, 2017

In a new report on Townhall, Rachel Alexander explains that Ellis “Jerry” Majetich, a combat veteran whose vehicle was hit by an IED while he was serving as Security Team Leader, Captain’s Orderly and Squad Leader with Weapons Company 1/7 during Operation Iraqi Freedom, is being told to pay back funds that the government had issued him despite his many attempts to cut the payments.

Majetich reportedly began working at Drexel Hamilton, a Wall Street firm that trains returning combat veterans in finance, and subsequently asked the Social Security Administration to discontinue his disability payments. Despite his request, Majetich was still receiving payments and once again went to the agency to have the payments stopped.

Alexander said that Majetich “was informed that his benefits had been halted and whatever he was receiving was because he was a combat veteran, or for his children because they were in college” and that he “told them that he did not believe this was a proper benefit and that everything should stop, but they refused.”

Alexander went on to explain that over the next year, Majetich called the office 13 times to tell them to stop paying him. When Majetich tried paying the payments back, they were paid right back to him. Finally, the agency admitted they were wrong to send the payments after Majetich and his now-wife demanded that something be in writing saying that he was entitled to the benefits.

Majetich began paying back the $68,000 that was issued to him over this time.

“He began paying Social Security back $2,000-$2,500 every month,” Alexander reported. “About a month before his wedding, Majetich received a bill from the IRS for about $9,800 saying that because he wasn’t entitled to the Social Security payments, they were being taxed. He dutifully paid the IRS debt off last year.”

Majetich ran into more trouble when he was asked to pay back funds he received since divorcing his first wife that the VA claimed they were not aware of. Majetich did inform the VA, but the department said the office that he informed did not communicate with the one that needed to know.

“Majetich was told if he didn’t set up a payment plan with the VA, he would not receive his $3,360 monthly payments for the next six months,” Alexander reported.

According to Alexander, Majetich has paid back $55,000 of the $96,000 total in bills from the government.

“Ellis Majetich doesn’t want pity,” Alexander reported.

“Overall, the VA has provided Majetich with excellent medical care,” she continued. “But the lack of communication within the agency and with veterans is a real problem that needs work. All Majetich wanted to do was work to support himself and his family, instead of having taxpayers pay for his regular living expenses. President [Donald] Trump said he is fixing problems within the VA. He or Congress need[s] to fix this one, fast.”