TN 10 (10-94)

RM 03870.052 Establishing NH's True Identity

A. Policy

Before action may be taken to resolve the scrambled earnings situation, establish each NH's “true” identity. Each individual involved must present evidence of identity. SSA records alone are not sufficient to establish identity.

B. Procedure

1. Evidence - general

See RM 10210.405 through RM 10210.430 for types of acceptable documents and their order of probative value to establish the individual's identity.

  • Recent photographs of the individual may be useful to include in employer contacts.

  • Form SSA-4156 (RM 03870.120) is a new form which may be used to contact the employer. Reproduce the form from the sample provided in RM 03870.120.

  • Obtain as much evidence of identity over a period of years, especially that which is available prior to the period in question.

2. Duplicate birth certificate presented

If 2 or more individuals presented duplicate birth certificates (B/C) as supporting evidence of identity:

  1. Verify the legitimacy of the document with the custodian of the records, if possible. (This is usually the Bureau of Vital Statistics.)

  2. Advise the individual with the invalid B/C of the fact and request additional evidence of identity. Obtain evidence of as high probative value as possible, such as a baptismal certificate, marriage certificate, etc. covering a period of time and established prior to the assignment of the SSN. (See RM 10210.405 through RM 10210.430 for discussion of fraudulent documents.)

  3. If the B/C is valid and identity is still not clear, request additional evidence from all individuals involved.

  4. As a last resort, request the individuals involved to furnish names and addresses of living parents and/or siblings. Obtain written permission to contact the relatives. The relatives should be asked to furnish some proof of identity which establishes relationship with the person involved in the SSN conflict.

    Any identification of a parent whose name agrees with that shown on the B /C or a copy of a siblings B/C reflecting at least one of the parents names shown on the subject's B/C would be acceptable.

    Once identity and relationship are established, ask the parents and/or siblings to identify which of the individuals is related to them. Such identification can be based on photographs. (Only ones willingly submitted by the individuals can be used.) If photographs are not available, solicit physical description and general information about the individual, i.e., present whereabouts, current employer, marital status, spouse and children's names, etc.

3. Contacting NH presenting false identity

When the true NH's identity is determined, the other individual should be confronted with this fact and advised that it is violation of the Social Security Act to use another person's SSN.

  • Advise the individual that failure to cooperate by not furnishing his or her true identity could result in a decision to seek prosecution.

  • Fully document the discussion/interview, in IC use the Report of Contact (EROC) screen. (MSOM EM 017.001 ) If IC has not been expanded to your office, document on form SSA-795 and include this information with the file being forwarded to OCRO or the PSC, as appropriate, for a final determination.

C. References

GN 04111.005 Reporting Guidelines for Program Violations

RM 10220.065 Social Security Number (SSN) Violations and Fraud


To Link to this section - Use this URL:
http://policy.ssa.gov/poms.nsf/lnx/0103870052
RM 03870.052 - Establishing NH's True Identity - 12/18/2014
Batch run: 12/18/2014
Rev:12/18/2014