TN 7 (10-22)

GN 01721.120 U.S. Totalization Benefits under the Spanish Agreement

A. General

Under the agreement, if a number holder (NH) has at least six U.S. quarters of coverage (QCs) but not enough to be insured for regular U.S. benefits, the NH's credits under the Spanish Social Security system can be added to NH's U.S. coverage to permit the NH (or any dependents or survivors) to qualify for U.S. Totalization benefits.

B. Crediting Spanish coverage

SSA will credit one U.S. QC for each 91 days (or remainder thereof) of Spanish contributions in a calendar year. (Spanish coverage is measured in days of contributions.) However, no credit will be given for:

  • any day of Spanish contributions prior to 1937, or

  • any day in a calendar quarter that is already credited as a U.S. QC, or

  • more than four QCs for any calendar year.

C. Computing benefits

When U.S. insured status is established based on combined U.S. and Spanish coverage, the amount of the U.S. Totalization benefit will be determined using the computation method described in GN 01701.200.

D. Adjudication responsibility

1. Field Office (FO) responsibilities

FOs are responsible for processing an initial insured status denial (see GN 01702.315) when the worker has at least six QCs but is not insured based on U.S. coverage alone. This denial will produce a notice advising the applicant that insured status is not met based on U.S. coverage alone and that the Spanish coverage record is being requested.

2. Division of International Operations responsibilities

DIO will request the Spanish coverage record. When the record is received, DIO will convert the Spanish coverage to U.S. QCs and finally adjudicate the claim.

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GN 01721.120 - U.S. Totalization Benefits under the Spanish Agreement - 10/13/2022
Batch run: 10/13/2022