BROOKLYN PARK, Minn. – This homicide lacks a deceased body. Thirty-three-year-old Adam Ronning is a busy husband, father and panel technician who, like many Minnesotans, has taxes withheld from his bi-weekly paycheck.
“They’ve never been able to prove that I’m dead,” he told FOX 9 Sunday, “It’s always me proving that I’m still here.”
But the IRS sees things differently. According to them, Ronning has been dead for 29 years. The error is one Ronning’s mother fought to correct when her son was four, according to the story.
“They blamed a computer glitch but it has been ‘glitching’ ever since,” Linda Picard-Millette said.
She received a letter in May 1987 informing her she could no longer receive child support after she re-married. The reason? Little Adam Ronning was somehow declared dead.
“I called up Social Security and said, ‘what do you mean he’s dead?!’” Picard-Millete recounted, “they apologized said they would issue a certificate of resurrection, but they wouldn’t give me a copy, and would take care of things.”
A certificate of resurrection seems like the perfect news story following Easter Sunday.
Yet, after Ronning filed his 2009 returns he discovered the problem had resurrected instead.
“[That’s] when the IRS gave me half of my refund and explained to me the reason I couldn’t get my full refund is because I was deceased,” he said referring to the 2009 notification.
“The only finger they’ll lift is the finger to point at other people,” he shook his head.
Forced to pick up where his mother left off, Ronning has been sent on an endless cycle between the IRS and social security.
“I’ve spent hours on the phone with the IRS, on hold, and waiting for someone, trying to speak to supervisors but they always point the finger at social security,” he sighed, “Social Security says that I’m fine. I’ve had three new social security cards now… I wouldn’t get a new card if I wasn’t around.”
The Department of Treasury even sent Ronning a letter that acknowledges he is indeed alive. Nevertheless, over the last five years the father of two, with another on the way, says things have actually gotten worse.
“Instead of getting half my refund now I get none of it,” Ronning said of why he now suspects the IRS owes him big.
So the rhetorical question is this: If Ronning failed to pay his taxes, would the federal government fine or jail the person they’ve declared deceased for nearly three decades? Oh yeah, you know they would! He’d be more alive than the fields with The Sound of Music.