Social Security Number required to collect prize

Posted By on January 26, 2007

In a similar vein to yesterday’s post concerning identity information and protecting it from theft, today’s post is a legally challenging one laleydealing with not having a Social Security number to protect. Maribel Nava Alvarez is in a pickle after winning a radio station raffle in Chicago. Alvarez, according to the Spanish Broadcasting System’s radio station WLEY-FM, was not awarded a raffle prize because she refused to produce (or doesn’t have) a social security number; she is suspected of being ‘undocumented.’ The radio station requests a ‘social security number’ for prizes over $500 for tax purposes (as is required by law) and therefore requires it before the substantial prize, in this case a classic car, can be award. Alvarez claims that she was never told this prior to entering the raffle and now fears being reported. Her attorney referenced a letter by the radio station as a perceived ‘threat,’ something according to former Texas prosecutor Nelda Blair is illegal. Ms. Alvarez has now filed a lawsuit against the radio station while also claiming “she has left the Chicago area out of fear that she would be deported.” She is “suing for breach of contract and emotional distress.”

This situation is similar, illegal immigrants who are receiving college scholarships have lost them when they are found to be undocumented — while others are finding help from the ACLU and able to continue their higher education. Where are we going with this whole ‘illegal immigration’ thing? Are people living in this country without permission breaking the law or not? Are they entitled to live in the United States, receive an education, scholarships to college, medical care and bypass the reporting of contest income to the Internal Revenue service?

Here’s a short YouTube clip commenting on the Alvarez-Radio Station situation.


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