TN 40 (05-12)
GN 00301.195 Preparing Request for Documents
A. Procedure for preparing requests for documents
If a claimant needs assistance, it may be sufficient to prepare special letters for his signature addressed to the record custodian, and inform him of the fees reflected in GN 00308.001 and GN 00312.001 through GN 00312.450. Do not use the field office (FO) letterhead or a franked envelope for this purpose.
Ask the claimant whether it is agreeable to have the record sent directly to the FO. Honor the claimant’s preference if he or she prefers to receive the original certification instead of having it sent to the FO. However, if the claimant prefers receiving the foreign record of birth involving one of the countries listed in the example in GN 00302.350B.3., advise the claimant that this may delay the claim.
B. When to use applicable forms
1. SSA-L706 (Letter to Custodian of Birth Records)
Use SSA-L706 to request a copy of a public or church record of age. If the custodian is located in a country where the language is Italian, Spanish, or German, prepare a photocopy of the applicable foreign language version of SSA-L706 as shown in GN 00301.235, Exhibits 1-3. Use SSA-L706 if the interviewer needs an English translation of a foreign language exhibit.
2. SSA-L707 (Request for Proofs from Custodian of Records)
Use SSA-L707 to obtain proof of marriage, divorce or death. You may request proof of age at time of marriage by using the SSA-L707.
3. SSA-L106 (Letter to Custodian of School Records)
Use SSA-L106 to request proof of age from school superintendents. Complete all items on the SSA-L106 as fully as possible. Enter any other pertinent information that the claimant provides in the remarks sections; e.g., names of teachers, and names of brothers and sisters in school at the same time.
4. Forms BC-600 and SSA-1535-U3 (Application for Search of Census Records)
For completing requests for census search, see GN 00302.760.
C. Procedure for mailing the request
1. Send the document directly to the FO as follows:
Have the claimant sign the request form.
Address an envelope for mailing the request to the custodian.
Enclose a non-franked, self-addressed envelope.
Annotate the appropriate FO unit or CR-FR name.
Enter the name of the NH on the envelope if the proof may contain a surname different from the NH's, e.g., birth certificate of a wife or widow.
Remind the claimant to put a postage stamp on the envelope and enclose the required fee.
2. Send the document to the claimant
Follow the steps in GN 00301.195C.1.a. through GN 00301.195C.1.d., except give the non-franked, self-addressed envelope directly to the claimant.