TN 5 (03-03)
GN 00506.210 When Fees for Service Can Be Collected
The organization may charge the beneficiary a fee for any month in which:
It is authorized by SSA to collect a fee, AND
It is payee for the beneficiary, AND
the beneficiary receives a Social Security and/or Supplemental Security Income (SSI) payment (SSI payments include federally-administered State Supplementary payments (SSP's). If the SSI payment consists of a federally administered SSP only, the organization can collect a fee from it.
When the 1st or the 3rd of the month falls on a holiday or a weekend, the potential exists for the payment to be received in the month before the month it is otherwise due. When this situation occurs, consider the payment received in the month it is due.
1. Retroactive Fees from Conserved Funds
An organizational payee is not allowed to collect past due fees from conserved funds. The FFS payee should collect the monthly fee from the beneficiary’s current check in the month the fee is due. The FFS payee can decide when to collect the fees within that month (for example, the same day the check is received, by mid-month, or afterwards.)
If the payee decides to collect the fee at the end of the current month, the fee must come from the leftover benefits for that month. If there’s not enough the payee may have to forfeit the fee for that month. The payee cannot use the benefits from the following month to make up for uncollected fees.
If the beneficiary is left with very little money after his/her expenses are paid, the FFS payee has the option (upon request from the beneficiary or on their own initiative) of waiving the fee, partially or totally, for that particular month.
In the event that the beneficiary has an initial award or post-entitlement event where retroactive benefits are due, the payee can collect the fees from the retroactive benefits (See GN 00506.210A.1 ) ONLY if ALL the requirements outlined in GN 00506.130 B.1 are met, AND
The FFS organization was the payee of record for each of the retroactive months in question, AND
Was authorized to collect fees for the retroactive period as part of the initial FFS determination (In other words, did not apply to become a FFS payee after the retroactive check was issued)
Payee services were performed for each retroactive month, AND
Benefits were due and payable for each retroactive month.
1. Check issued before the end-of-month or holiday weekend
A beneficiary has had a social service agency, Local Help Inc. as his representative payee since 1995. On January 1, 2002, the payee applies for status as a fee for service organization. SSA approves the request on January 15, 2002. The beneficiary receives his March check on February 28. SSA will consider the payment received in March for the purpose of charging the permitted fees.
2. Suspension and Reinstatement
A beneficiary moved to a different town and did not notify his payee right away; the payee notified SSA, who suspended payment; when the beneficiary finally told the payee of his move, (due to miscommunication) the payee failed to report the move to SSA.
The agency (SSA) suspended benefits for two months while developing whereabouts unknown. The payee continued to act in that capacity and handle all the affairs of the beneficiary, including paying his rent, utilities, groceries, keeping up with medical appointments, etc. When the payee finally reported the move and the beneficiary’s checks were reinstated, the payee was entitled to collect a fee for the two months in question.