Posts Tagged ‘Social Security’

Ledford vs. Ledford, and Social Security

November 24, 2011

This has been an interesting 2 weeks.

I got my annual statement on my mortgage & escrow account, and my home owners insurance went up 25%.

I’ve been working at a very nice kennel with very nice co-workers for a little over 6 months, but I’ve been looking for part time work, as they can’t generate enough grooming, but  won’t pay a higher per centage.   There were other aggravating complications (groupons  & a manager under-pricing grooming—which they made me eat ), but I was looking for other part time work.

As luck would have it, a place that I wanted  to work for part-time wants me full time…, offering great benefits and  equally great opportunities….but they want to see my actual Social Security Card.  I know it’s around here, but I tore the place apart looking for it and could not find it.

I had a lot on my plate—as they say.  I’ve been playing phone tag with the home owners insurance company (Farmer’s—which was  over 25% cheaper than Travelers last year), and   knew, because property taxes & water fees are going up, that I have to lower my costs.  Fact is, I am paying 5.25% on my mortgage, and the going rate is…3.5%

Last time I refinanced, which had to be around 2005, they included  the rents in my income.  They don’t do that anymore, and last year my adjusted gross income was  $16,100.  That’s without rents.  Adjusted.  Not enough to refinance.  Yes—the irony is that I have never missed a mortgage payment (or any bill payment except for those bills that didn’t get to me because the USPS lost them—what—maybe 3 times?), and I haven’t really had to go into savings (except that, once again, Citimortgage decided my escrow account was too low—so I could either cough up $2200, or pay an additional $248 a month—& they didn’t bat an eye  about the 25%  raise in insurance. That’s my problem.  Whatever….

How to accomplish this….so I asked if my father could be a co-signer on the re-fi, and the mortgage brokers  said, “NO, not unless he lives with you.  He’d be an investor, & your  per cent would be  up 1% over prevailing rates  & you’d have to  pay an additional 2 points to close ($1400).  That made no sense to me.  Nor did it make any sense to pay  10% in closing costs to Citimortgage to lower my fee. That’s BS.

So, I am in negotiations with my roommate.  Meanwhile…

This other  pet  shop company offered me a full time job less than 5 miles from home—with benefits.  One of the issues I’ve had with where I have been working is that it has been taking 45 minutes to  an hour—no matter the time of day—to get to them—just 11 miles from home.   They also wanted me to drive a mobile dog grooming van an additional  20 miles—which would have added another 2 hours commuting time.  No benefits.  My new commute would be 20 minutes or less.  While initially I will probably take a pay cut, it’s actually a wash, as  I figure the health insurance is worth at least $50 a week minimum.  But they  don’t care that the law states I only have to show my passport, or my drivers license  and my birth certificate to prove that I am legal to work in the USA. Their policy  is they want to eyeball the   social security card.

So…I went to  my social security office with my birth certificate, and, said, while I was there, I wanted to go back to using my maiden name.  Like the proverbial wrench into the machine,  ah, no…no can do.  Didn’t matter what my birth certificate said, or that I have been paying taxes for over 30 years (& have gotten 3 mortgages) using my maiden name… the SSA demands to see legal proof you are divorced so you can legally use your maiden name.

I can’t believe this is true. I wrote Cong. Jan Schakowsky, & Sen. Dick Durbin (from whom I got a canned letter saying htat he did not support cuts in Social Securlty—his staff should be ashamed THAT THEY DID NOT RESPOND TO MY QUERY!!!) and Sen. Mark Kirk.  I don’t have time to wait.

I went downtown to the county building, & remembered, from a bit over 20 years ago, when I went into Peace Corps (they want to see that you don’t owe child support or alimony), that the  lawsuit was Ledford vs.Ledford .  We were divorced in  or around 1980…& they were able to locate  the decree on microfishe.

I went back to the Social Security office, gave them the divorce decree  and my birth certificate, and  should have a new card soon—but at least I have a receipt that says I applied for the new card, &  and we start another chapter in the saga.  But after Thanksgiving,I, again, have to nag Farmers….