CLEVELAND – Sam Oliver says he feels pretty good for a dead guy.
Oliver spoke to the FOX 8 I-Team in the back yard of his Cleveland home Friday. He spent the last several months trying to straighten out his life, after learning the Social Security Administration and credit card companies told him their records showed he died.
“I couldn’t believe it. I kept asking them what did I die of, where did I die, was there a funeral and did anyone show up?” Oliver said. “I’m even getting letters from people asking about the estate of the late Sam Oliver. Obviously, I am not dead, but I can’t find out how this happened.”
Oliver said in March 2021 he was hospitalized with COVID-19 for close to two weeks. About a month later, he went to Home Depot and used his credit card to purchase a water heater. His card was declined. He didn’t think much of it until November when he applied for another credit card and was declined.
“I worked really hard to have good credit so this was odd,” Oliver said. “A week later, I got a letter in the mail from the bank that deals with the credit card at the store and it tells me the reason they declined me the credit is because applicant is deceased.”
After receiving that letter, he got more. All saying he was deceased. He called a credit reporting agency that told him the Social Security Administration listed him as dead.
“I called and went in person, and they finally gave me a letter saying it was a mistake and I am not dead,” Oliver said. “They won’t tell me how this happened. Or who reported me dead. This caused issues for me with my credit. My credit dropped 100 points and all they can tell me is to keep doing what I am doing and it will go back up.”
We did reach out to the Social Security Administration, but did not hear back. The letter they gave to Oliver stated they receive death reports from many sources like financial institutions and funeral home. The letter didn’t say how they received the wrong information about his death.
Oliver advised everyone to keep checking their credit reports to make sure what happened to him doesn’t happen to them.
“I really hope I am the only one this happens to because it’s not easy and it’s not fun,” Oliver said. “I never had an issue with my credit before, but I have never been dead before either.”