LIVINGSTON COUNTY, N.Y. – A Nunda woman has been charged with third-degree grand larceny after allegedly stealing over $34,500 of her deceased mother’s pension payments. Patricia Chatley, 59, is accused of continuing to collect her mother’s monthly benefits after her mother passed away in January 2020.
The deceased, Janet Chatley, retired from the Livingston County Department of Social Services in 1994 and was receiving around $1,000 in monthly pension benefits. However, Patricia failed to report her mother’s death to the bank or the New York State and Local Retirement System (NYSLRS). Instead, she allegedly transferred the pension fund payments to her own account.
The New York State Comptroller’s Division of Investigations discovered the unauthorized payments after receiving an anonymous complaint. Investigators determined that Patricia collected 30 unauthorized payments following her mother’s death.
Patricia Chatley has been issued an appearance ticket and is scheduled to appear in court on Feb. 12 to face the charges against her.
The case is a stark reminder of the consequences of pension fraud and the importance of timely reporting of deaths to pension providers. By failing to adhere to these responsibilities, individuals risk facing serious legal repercussions.
Authorities are continuing to investigate the case, and it serves as a cautionary tale for those who may consider misappropriating pension funds. It also highlights the need for vigilance in monitoring and reporting pension payments, especially after the death of the recipient.