GN 01085.015 Nonessential Material Omitted From Title II and Title XVI Claims
Although all claims must be fully documented to support the adjudicative decision, do not include material that is clearly nonessential and without present or probable future value.
Nonessential material in the claims folder:
hampers subsequent review of title II and title XVI claims actions,
makes subsequent actions more prone to error,
increases folder storage costs for SSA and,
adversely impacts limited storage space.
To reduce the accumulation of nonessential paper, all claims processing personnel will:
Use available electronic remarks or report of contact screens (e.g., RMKS and RPOC in MCS, ARMK and DROC in MSSICS) to record statements and other information instead of preparing separate forms (see GN 01085.010A.).
Use claims transmittal forms for alerts and special instructions to the PC, whenever possible, instead of preparing separate RCs.
Avoid recording routine development notes on RCs when an electronic screen is available.
Evaluate and remove all extraneous material as part of the current action.
C. List of non-essential materials
Do not file the following nonessential material in the paper claims file:
Notes or rough drafts made for the convenience of the FO/PC.
Blank forms or questionnaires.
Carbon copies of multi-page forms, multiple copies of RCs, and proofs or other material already in file.
Envelopes not required to establish a filing date or necessary for other documentation purposes. (See GN 00204.007 on the use of mailing dates as the filing date.)
Copies of routine development correspondence with claimants or third parties. (This does not include correspondence which might be considered an application under GN 00204.010 or important to any other determination.)
Route slips (e.g., forms SSA-3293, SSA-3601, SSA-408, SSA-559, etc.), assuming there is no entitlement, benefit, payee, notice or other critical data annotated on the form. Technicians should refrain from using route slips for this purpose.
Letters requesting evidence now in file, including RCs recording follow-up efforts.
Computer output material which has no future documentation, entitlement or adjudicative value.
Note: Do not destroy computer output retained for documentation of notice language.
Signed authorization forms that were not used (e.g., SSA-827, SSA-4641-U2, SSA-8510, etc.).
All other routine material that has no programmatic retention value (e.g., come-in letters or routing forms with no documentation, entitlement or adjudicative value; internal FO checklists; flags, etc.).