Program Operations Manual System (POMS)
TN 7 (03-11)
GN 00903.050 Basic Policy on Information and Referral (I & R) Services
A. SSA referrals to other agencies
Through a referral service, we are able to assist the individual and more fully achieve
the stated objectives of the Social Security programs. We strive to promote I & R
services as an integral part of our role in community service and planning activities.
We accomplish this by coordinating and cooperating with existing community I & R resources.
Helpful, direct referral services that link claimants in need to social services agencies
and community networks will decrease referral problems with other agencies.
Financial aid, services such as job counseling and placement, home financing or planning,
medical and hospital care, rehabilitation, protective and welfare services, homemaking,
or home care and nursing may help the individual to conserve or supplement his or
These and other social welfare programs such as adult education, recreation, or retirement
counseling may also help the individual to live more fully and independently and,
thereby, improve the quality of his or her life.
B. Limitations of referrals
Although SSA field offices (FO) provide information about existing community services,
we will provide direct referrals only in those situations where there is a clearly
expressed need for services or where the need is readily identifiable or clearly observable.
The FO will not provide detailed or in-depth counseling beyond that required to give
advice about services provided by agencies sufficient for an appropriate referral.
In addition, it will not probe for hidden or undetected needs. We will assist such
individuals as necessary in making contact with the State or local agency.