TN 22 (11-11)

GN 01070.600 Retrieving Information and Documents from Stored Folders

A. Background on Title II paper folder storage

Social Security Administrations’ (SSA) Title II folders are stored primarily in the National Records Center (SSANRC) and the Office of Central Operations’ (OCO) Megasite.

1. Information Retrieval Groups (IRG)

Each location has an IRG, which assists field offices (FO) and Program Service Centers (PSC) by retrieving and supplying information and documents from folders. The SSANRC stores and maintains the Title II Retirement and Survivors Insurance folders and Title II Disability Insurance (DI) folders for number holders (NH) age 54 or over.

IRGs are not responsible for:

  • processing claims or PE actions,

  • annotating or updating screens,

  • obtaining folders for a FO or PSC, or

  • providing voluminous copies of medical records.

Within five business days, the IRG responds to the requester by relaying the information in the file by telephone or fax, or by storing the material in the electronic claims folder.

2. FOs and PSCs

The FOs and PSCs must use the following procedures for processing Title II folders:

  • If the needed information is electronically stored, do not contact the IRG, (Claims File Records Management System claims folder, Electronic Folder, Master Beneficiary Record (MBR), Supplemental Security Record (SSR), Modernized Claims System (MCS), evidence (EVID) screens, etc.).

  • Always obtain a Processing Center Action Control System (PCACS) or Paperless Read Only Query System (PPL ROQS) query to confirm that an action is not pending in the PSC. As an example, the Type Of Event Level (TOEL) may show that an exception to an FO input is now in the PSC, and the PSC processes it there.

  • Review the PCACS query for the current folder location. Do not use the Folder Location Indicator (FLI) shown on the MBR, as this is not always accurate, or rely on an old PCACS query as the folder may have moved since that query.

  • If you need information from a stored folder, request the information from the IRG prior to requesting the folder.

  • Use PCACS when you must obtain the paper claims folder.

  • If you receive a query, letter, document, etc., that requires action by another office, forward it to the appropriate office for processing. (If necessary, that office contacts the IRG).

B. Process for retrieving information and documents


If the PCACS response contains a “CAVE FILE” reference in the LOCATION field, send an administrative message (ADMS) to the SSANRC IRG by selecting #16 from the SSA Main Menu; then select function #15.

Use the following format for the ADMS (see example):

  • Routing Addressee: SAXHX

  • To: CAVE File (enter location number); IRG BA or CA

  • From: Your name; your position; FO or PSC and module or component; telephone number; fax number, routing indicator

  • Subject: SSN, NH Name, and

  • Text: Date and time, briefly summarize the required information and document(s).

For control purposes, maintain a copy of the ADMS electronically. See the following example of the ADMS:


 View PDF Version

  • If the requested information was stored electronically, the SSANRC responds with a phone call to discuss the information and to advise the requestor.

  • Annotate the pending action with a summary of the discussion and check the electronic folder, if instructed by the IRG. Evaluate the information or evidence received to determine if it is adequate to process the pending action.

  • The IRG faxes information to the requestor, if unable to reach him or her by phone.

  • After the IRG responds to the request, if you still need the paper claims folder, request it through PCACS.

Typically, the SSANRC IRG responds within two days. If the SSANRC IRG does not respond within five full workdays after transmission of the ADMS, contact the IRG Quality Assurance Technician (QAT) at 1-(888)-281-2999.

  • If the PCACS response contains a ‘PC7 AUXRH FIN FIN’ or ‘PC8 AUXRH FIN FIN’ in the LOCATION field, use the following instructions based on whether you are located in an FO or PSC.

  • If the PCACS response has the folder location of “QUES”, do