BASIC (09-05)

GN 01745.210 Developing Evidence in Claims for Japanese Benefits

A. Introduction

The following subsections show the types of evidence that may be used to support claims for Japanese benefits.

B. Policy - General

Under the agreement with Japan, SSA will take applications for both regular and Totalization benefits on behalf of Japan and provide limited assistance in obtaining evidence needed to support the claim.

C. Policy - Using Evidence Submitted in Claim for U.S. Benefits

Evidence that is used to establish a factor of entitlement for U.S. Social Security benefits may also be used by Japan to establish the same factor for Japanese benefits. Consequently, it is unnecessary for the applicant to submit additional evidence to document a factor of entitlement for Japanese benefits when that factor has already been verified for SSA purposes.

D. Policy - Entitlement Factors

The following indicates what factors of entitlement, in addition to insured status, must be established in claims for Japanese benefits.

1. Retirement

The entitlement factors that must be established for Japanese retirement claims are:

  • Age of worker.

  • Marriage, if a spouse’s supplement is claimed.

  • Age and relationship of child, if child’s supplement claimed.

2. Survivors

The entitlement factors that must be established for Japanese survivors’ claims are:

  • Death of worker.

  • Marriage, if widow’s or widower’s benefit is claimed.

  • Age and relationship of child, if child’s supplement claimed.

  • Age and relationship of parents, grandchildren or grandparents, if such benefits are claimed.

3. Disability

The entitlement factors that must be established for Japanese disability claims are:

  • Age of worker.

  • Degree of disability (medical evidence).

  • Date of first medical examination establishing disability.

  • Marriage, if spouse’s supplement claimed.

  • Age and relationship of child, if child’s supplement claimed.

E. Procedure - General

Take the following actions when developing evidence to support claims for Japanese benefits.

1. Accepting Evidence

Accept any evidence the applicant wishes to submit. If the applicant does not want to release an original document, photocopy the evidence and certify the copy.

CAUTION: Do not hold claims for Japanese benefits for prolonged periods pending receipt of evidence. If an applicant is unable to obtain needed evidence within a reasonable time, transmit the claim to the Office of International Operations (OIO) without the evidence. Advise the applicant that the responsible Japanese agency will contact him or her directly to obtain any evidence it needs.

2. Types of Evidence

If the applicant requests guidance on the type of evidence to submit, see:

3. Document the File

Document the file to show when a factor of entitlement for a Japanese benefit has already been verified for a U.S. claim.

a. Concurrent Title II/Japanese Claim

Send a certified photocopy of the relevant evidence with the Japanese claim to OIO if the concurrent Title II claim will be sent to a program service center (PSC) other than OIO.

b. Prior Title II Claim

Include a master beneficiary record (MBR) printout in the claims file sent to OIO to show which factors, other than disability, have been verified in a prior file.

4. Obtain Record of Number Holder’s (NH's) U.S. Coverage

  • Obtain a record of the NH's U.S. coverage in all claims for Japanese benefits. When the applicant is filing for both U.S. and Japanese benefits, completion of the modernized claims system (MCS) screens will automatically generate a separate earnings record for the Japanese claim. When a claimant files for Japanese benefits only, which is a complex MCS exclusion, request an Informational/Certified Earnings Record (ICERS) per MSOM 231-C.

  • Obtain proof of lag earnings if U.S. covered work in the lag period is alleged and the applicant is filing for any Japanese benefit. (See RS 01404.005 through RS 01404.018 for proof of l