The decision to make a direct contact must be made on the merits of each case individually;
such factors as the type and amount of information needed should be considered. Authority
for direct contact with claimant's representatives is discussed in GN 00904.048.
Experience has shown that information which is readily obtainable by direct contact
includes items that can be recorded on a Report of Contact. Short statements, forms,
or applications that can be explained or completed by phone and mailed for signature,
and material available to the individual that can be mailed directly to the FO are
also suitable items to be handled by direct contact.
Elaborate discrepancies, complex applications, previous attempts at direct contact,
matters involving potential fraud, or any other situations that should be handled
face to face, should not be considered for direct contact. If the situation could
be handled by telephone or letter in your own service area, it can be handled in this
manner under these procedures.