TN 2 (03-04)

GN 01702.215 Special Evidence Requirements for Claims for Foreign Benefits

A. Introduction

The subsections below describe the evidence requirements that are common to all agreements. Special evidence requirements that are only applicable to certain agreements are described in the subchapters that cover those agreements.

B. Policy

1. General

Where there is a common entitlement factor in claims for U.S. and foreign benefits (e.g., date of birth), the foreign agencies will accept any Social Security Administration (SSA) verifications done in connection with a claim for U.S. benefits other than a verification of degree of disability. Therefore, it is not necessary to develop evidence of an entitlement factor in a claim for foreign benefits if SSA has already established that factor in a claim for U.S. benefits. The Office of International Operations (OIO) will certify the data as shown on the master beneficiary record (MBR) when it forwards the claim for foreign benefits to the foreign agency. For example, if a man was entitled to U.S. retirement benefits at age 62 and filed for U.K. retirement benefits at age 65, it would not be necessary to develop proof of age. OIO would certify the date of birth on the MBR when forwarding the claim to the United Kingdom.

2. Medical evidence

Medical evidence used to establish a period of disability in a claim for U.S. benefits can also be used to establish a period of disability in a claim for foreign benefits. However, the foreign agency will make its own determination of whether the applicant meets the foreign country's definition of disability based on the medical evidence.

3. U.S. earnings record

A certified copy of the worker's U.S. earnings record, including lag earnings and unposted military service, must always be provided to the foreign country when a claim for foreign benefits is filed through SSA. Lag earnings and unposted military service must be developed in claims for foreign benefits since, otherwise, the foreign agency would not be aware there is additional unposted coverage which might be needed to determine if the worker is insured under the foreign system.

C. Procedure

1. General

Accept any evidence the applicant wishes to submit to support the claim for foreign benefits. Follow the normal title II rules if the applicant requests guidance on the type of evidence to submit (e.g., the rules in GN 00302.000 for proof of age). Do not hold a claim for foreign benefits for an unreasonable period simply because the applicant wishes to submit evidence that is not immediately available. Advise the applicant the foreign agency will recontact him or her for any evidence it needs after it receives the claim from OIO.

2. Medical evidence

Follow the procedures in GN 01702.415 for developing medical evidence in claims for disability benefits from foreign countries.

3. U.S. earnings record

Where the applicant is filing concurrent applications for U.S. and foreign benefits, complete the TOTALIZATION (TOTL) screen in addition to the other modernized claims system (MCS) screens. Completion of the TOTL screen will generate an earnings record for the foreign country.

Where the applicant is filing only for benefits from an agreement country, request an Informational/Certified Earnings Record (ICERS).

D. References

  • Requesting an Informational/Certified Earnings Record, MSOM ICERS 001.004

  • Totalization Country Codes, GN 01702.525C.2.

  • Totalization (TOTL) screen, MSOM MCS 009.011


To Link to this section - Use this URL:
http://policy.ssa.gov/poms.nsf/lnx/0201702215
GN 01702.215 - Special Evidence Requirements for Claims for Foreign Benefits - 02/20/2014
Batch run: 02/20/2014
Rev: