TN 6 (09-02)
GN 00603.100 Entitlement Terminated - Notice to be Given About Conserved Benefits
When a beneficiary who has been receiving benefits by representative payment is no longer entitled to benefits and the prior payee has returned any remaining conserved benefits to SSA, notify the beneficiary of the existence of conserved funds.
Use the following guidelines to determine proper notification to a beneficiary that conserved funds exist.
1. Living Beneficiary
Send the beneficiary a notice when payment ceases because the beneficiary is no longer entitled to benefits (e.g., attainment of age 18, marriage, cessation of disability) and the representative payee or any former payee who was permitted to continue administering conserved funds has returned the conserved benefits to SSA. The notice will advise the beneficiary that the conserved funds will be reissued soon. Use the language included in NL 00703.354 -- Conserved Benefits - Entire Amount Paid to New Representative Payee or to the Beneficiary.
Do not send a notice when entitlement terminates and the beneficiary is incapable of managing benefits. In such situations, develop for proper disposition of the funds in the best interests of the beneficiary.
Do not send a notice when the terminating event is cessation of disability and the former payee holding conserved funds is the beneficiary's spouse who is currently residing in the same household with the beneficiary.
2. Deceased Beneficiary
If the terminating event is the death of the beneficiary, notify the payee and any former payee who was permitted to continue administering conserved benefits. See NL 00703.204 -- Notice to Representative Payee and Any Former Representative Payee Administering Conserved Funds When Beneficiary Dies. Inform the payee(s) that the benefits (including income earned on the benefits and any benefits he/she has conserved since his/her last accounting) belong to the deceased beneficiary's estate. The benefits should be turned over to the legal representative of the beneficiary's estate for disposition under State law.
SSA will not get involved in deciding who is entitled to the estate funds. If there is no legal representative of the beneficiary's estate, the representative payee must contact the State probate court for instructions on what to do with remaining conserved funds. If a payee wishes to claim reimbursement, he/she should make his/her request to the legal representative of the estate. If the beneficiary dies after the representative payee refunds conserved benefit funds to SSA, follow the procedure in GN 00603.055B.5.
NOTE: This instruction does not apply to unnegotiated checks. When a payee has unnegotiated checks in his/her possession after the death of the beneficiary, see GN 02405.010 (title II checks) and GN 02405.100 (title XVI checks) for the procedures to follow.
How to Process Unendorsed Title II and Black Lung Returned Benefit Checks Received in the FO -- GN 02405.010
How to Process Unendorsed Title XVI Returned Checks in the FO -- GN 02405.100
Notice to Representative Payee and Any Former Representative Payee Administering Conserved Funds When Beneficiary Dies -- NL 00703.204
What to do if a Beneficiary Dies after Payee Returned Conserved Funds, GN 00603.055B.5