TN 2 (09-85)

GN 01704.875 Notices to Claimants

A. General

1. All agreements

LCs are responsible for notifying claimants about the action taken on their totalization claims; i.e., the name and address of the agency to which the application was sent and if foreign earnings records were requested, the length of time before a reply is expected.

LCs also are responsible for informing a claimant who has listed a spouse on his/her totalization application that the spouse might be eligible for benefits from the foreign country on his/her own record. In these cases, LCs must enclose the appropriate informational pamphlet.

2. Italy

In addition, for Italian totalization claims, LCs are responsible for informing U.S. beneficiaries who have filed for U.S. totalization benefits that their regular monthly benefits will continue while the totalization claim is pending. Also, if a spouse, listed on an application for benefits from a foreign country, is under 62 years old and has no child under 16 in care, the LC is responsible for informing the NH that the spouse is not eligible for benefits from the United States.

B. Methods of notifying claimants

1. Additions to award and disallowance notices

If a CA is sending a claimant an RSDI award or disallowance notice which is routed to an LC before being typed, the LC adds the necessary paragraphs with the appropriate fill-ins to the Form SSA-573. The LC also enters his/her name and the date in the appropriate spaces.

2. Preprinted notices

If an RSDI award or disallowance notice is not appropriate, or if it was sent without the required totalization information, send a preprinted notice if it contains all the required paragraphs. Complete the notices as follows (ALL MANUAL ENTRIES MUST BE LEGIBLY BLOCK PRINTED):

  1. Enter the current date in the upper right-hand corner—a date stamp may be used.

  2. Enter the name and address of the addressee in the appropriate space (that space which will ensure that the name and address are displayed in the window of a window envelope).

  3. “X” the blocks next to the appropriate paragraphs.

  4. If a fill-in requires information about the agency or office to which you are sending a totalization claim, enter the information in the space provided. Be sure to show the name as well as the address of German agencies—if address stamps are available, they may be used in lieu of block printing.

  5. Always enclose the appropriate informational pamphlet if the paragraph concerning the possible entitlement of a spouse is marked with an “X.”

  6. Fold the notice and insert it in a franked window envelope so that the name and address are displayed clearly.

  7. Document the folder with a copy of the notice.

C. Dictated notices

If information must be sent to an individual and the RSDI notice was sent without it and the preprinted notice does not contain all the information necessary, send a dictated letter. Most of the paragraphs which should be included in the letter can be found in NL 00711.000 ff. Be sure to show the numbers of and fill-ins for these paragraphs.

D. Notices returned by post office

If a notice is returned by the post office, carefully check the file to determine that the address on the notice is correct according to the information available. Usually checking the file will resolve the problem. If it does not and the address is a U.S. address, attempt to contact the addressee by phone—call the area information operator if the home number is not in file. If a phone contact cannot be made, contact the servicing DO and ask for assistance in determining the correct address. Depending upon the urgency of the situation, telephone or write to the DO. If the DO contact is made in writing, attach the notice to the request, instructing the DO to forward the notice to the addressee as soon as the correct address is found. Be sure to prepare a photocopy of the notice for the claims folder.

If the address is foreign, request assistance from the FSP. In these cases, attach a copy of the material from which the address was taken. Also attach the notice asking the FSP to forward it as soon as the correct address is found.

If a notice is returned because the addressee is deceased, route the folder to a BA.

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