TN 26 (09-06)

GN 02201.044 Debtor Reactions to Collection of Title II Overpayments by Federal Salary Offset (FSO)

A. Background

The debtor may make a number of requests and allegations in response to an FSO collection. The debtor may request reduction of the amount of offset each pay day due to hardship or a special FSO review. The requests and allegations pertaining to FSO can be made at any time during the FSO process, from the initial due process notice until the debt is paid in full.

Therefore, this section is organized according to the following three logical groups of debtor requests and allegations:

B. Due process request

1. Request for explanation of overpayment

Upon receipt of a request for an explanation of the overpayment, proceed as follows:

a. FO/TSC action

If the debtor first contacts the FO/TSC for an explanation, use the MBR/ROAR/PHUS or Title II Overpayment (QROP) (MSOM QUERIES 006.024), accessed via Inquiry Response or Master File Query, to provide an explanation of the overpayment. Keep explanations generic and, if possible, provide explanations immediately. Document the explanation provided on DMS Remarks screen.

If online queries contain insufficient information or unresolvable discrepancies, proceed as follows:

  • From the DMS menu, FO use the Protest/Stop Recovery Request (FO) screen (DRPF) (See MSOM DMS 006.019) and select “Explanation”.

  • TSC use the Protest/Stop Recovery Request (TSC) screen (DRPT) (see MSOM DMS 006.020) and select “Explanation”.

  • Refer the issue to the servicing PC through an MDW.

  • On the MDW show “Necessary Action – TOP/ECO Case – Do not Backlog”.

  • Record the action taken on DMS Remarks screen.

  • Include the debtor's current address and daytime telephone number, if different from the address and telephone number shown on our records.

  • If asked, advise the caller that he/she should receive a response within 30 days.

b. PC action

If the debtor first contacts the PC for an explanation, attempt to answer the question by using the MBR/ROAR/PHUS or QROP (MSOM QUERIES 006.024). Keep explanations generic to the extent possible. If online queries contain insufficient information or unresolvable discrepancies, from the DMS menu, on the Protest/Stop Recovery Request (PC) screen (DRPR) (See MSOM DMS 006.003), input “Explanation”, unless the FO/TSC has already input “Explanation” as in GN 02201.041B.1.a. Provide the explanation.

Once the debtor has received a satisfactory explanation and requests no additional action, such as waiver, the PC's next action depends upon the status of the debt when the explanation was requested.

  • If the debt was written off (in terminated collection status) when the debtor requested an explanation, terminate collection by using the Terminate Collection screen (DFTE). (See MSOM DMS 007.003). Terminating collection will set the debt up for TOP and FSO selection in the next selection cycle.

  • If the debt was in RECOOP and was not written off when the debtor requested an explanation, input an installment agreement on the Record Installment Agreement screen (DRIN) (See MSOM DMS 006.014). This will resume billing and allow the debt to be selected for FSO and TOP.

2. Request for waiver

A request for waiver may be a formal request or may be implied. The request may be in various forms:

  • The SSA-632-BK, Request for Waiver and Recovery Questionnaire (See GN 02250.240 and GN 02250.400). This is the preferred form for requesting waiver because it elicits all information needed to make the waiver determination, or

  • A plea for relief in a letter to a PC or from a Congressman, or

  • Verbal request to a field office, teleservice center, or Debt Management Branch employee, or

  • The tear-off portion of the SSA-3105 (See GN 02201.009).

  • A request for waiver within the 60-day period of the TOP/ECO notice (or within 30 days of the FSO notice) will prevent FSO from being started. A request for waiver after FSO has begun will result in stopping FSO until the waiver decision is made

a. TSC action

If the TSC receives the request, proceed as follows:

  • Send an SSA-632-BK to the debtor.

  • In the upper right-hand corner of the SSA-632-BK, show “TOP/ECO Case”, the date and your office code.

  • Include a courtesy return envelope addressed to the FO that services the address on the FSO query or the debtor's current address, if different.

  • Advise the caller to complete the SSA-632-BK and return it to the servicing FO.

  • Record the action on DMS Remarks.

  • The TSC should input the informal waiver request to the Protest/Stop Recovery Request (TSC) (DRPT) screen. (See MSOM DMS 006.020).

b. FO action

If the FO receives the request and no Protest/Stop Recovery Request screen has been input:

  • The FO should input the waiver request to the Protest/Stop Recovery Request (FO) screen (DRPF). (See MSOM DMS 006.019).

  • Select protest reason “informal waiver” when the debtor indicates that he wants to file for waiver, but no signed SSA-632-BK (or equivalent information) has been received.

  • Select protest reason “initial waiver” when a signed SSA-632-BK (or equivalent information in a statement signed by the debtor) has been received.

See GN 02201.021 for detailed instructions for processing the waiver request in the FO.

c. PC action

If the PC receives the request and no Protest/Stop Recovery Request screen has been input:

  • The PC should input the waiver request to the Protest/Stop Recovery Request (PC) screen (DRPR). (See MSOM DMS 006.003).

  • See GN 02201.023 for detailed instructions for processing the waiver request in the PC.

  • Within five business days, take the following action depending upon the status of the debt when the waiver was requested: (1) If the debt was written off (in terminated collection status) when the debtor requested a waiver, terminate collection by using the Terminate Collection screen (DFTE). (See MSOM DMS 007.003). Terminating collection will set the debt up for TOP and FSO selection in the next selection cycle. (2) If the debt was in RECOOP and was not written off when the debtor requested a waiver, input an installment agreement on the Record Installment Agreement screen (DRIN) (See MSOM DMS 006.014). This will resume billing and allow the debt to be selected for FSO and TOP.

3. Right to inspect and copy records related to the debt

The debtor has the right to inspect and copy SSA’s records related to the debt.

a. PC/TSC Action

  • If a debtor should contact the PC or TSC and request to inspect or copy SSA's records about their debt, refer the debtor to their servicing field office.

  • Record the action taken on DMS remarks.

b. FO action

  • Ask the debtor what records he or she wants to inspect and copy.

  • If the debtor does not know what records he/she wants to inspect and copy, then review on-line queries.

  • If necessary, obtain the claims file.

  • When the claims file is located, notify the debtor and process in accordance with GN 03360.020 Privacy Act Administration – Copying Records.

  • Record the action taken on DMS Remarks

4. Request for review

The law and regulations governing FSO allow the debtor to request a review of the debt. This review by SSA is an opportunity for the debtor to present evidence showing that he/she does not owe the debt or they do not owe the amount stated in SSA’s 30 day notice. This review is not the same as reconsideration of the overpayment determination, in that SSA's decision does not have any further appeal rights. The debtor cannot appeal SSA’s decision on the request for review. See GN 02201.043A.6.a for more information.

a. FO action

  • Inform debtor that the request for review must be in writing on either an SSA-795 or equivalent.

  • Tell debtor that he/she can submit the request and any available evidence to the FO or mail it directly to MAMPSC –DMS at PO BOX 15531, Kansas City MO, 64106.

If Debtor provides signed written request and evidence at the FO:

  • Advise debtor that he/she will receive a decision in the mail.

  • Input request to DRPR screen (DMS.006.003) for review of the debt and annotate DMS Remarks accordingly.

  • Annotate MBR or SSR Special Message Field —“FSO CASE, Debtor requests review”

  • Complete and print FSO overpayment track sheet posted to the KC Region’s RSI and SSI sites, with all applicable information: If there is no available appeal information, track sheet must at least include:

    • debtor’s name

    • debtor’s SSN

    • overpayment rational

    • folder location, when not available indicate unable to locate

  • Print Initial Overpayment Notice and/or any other OP notices available in the Online Retrieval System (ORS) (see MSOM ORS 005.001)

  • Photocopy all documentation and prepare a coversheet indicating: “FSO-CASE”/TOEL: OPMT/FSO REV.

  • Fax all documentation to MAMPSC-DMS paperless fax at 816-936-5470 for control. (see note below)

  • Prepare a paper folder with all the documentation and mail it to:

    OCALJ
    5107 Leesburg Pike, Suite 1500
    Falls Church, VA 22041-3255

         – no later than next business day.

       

  • Retain copy of documents in the office pending file for 10 days.

  • Within the 10 days, query PCACS or PPL ROQS for FSO action pending in Paperless. If an action exists then material in FO holding file can be destroyed.

  • If there is no pending action for review on PCACS or PPL ROQS, call the MAMPSC-DMS (816-936-3212) to verify that the request for review was received. If not received, fax the documentation again and repeat the last three steps.

NOTE: The Debt Management Section in MAMPSC is responsible for follow up with OCALJ on adjudication of all FSO reviews. MAMPSC-DMS will prepare detail local instructions for processing these cases.

b. TSC/PC action

  • Inform debtor that the request has to be in writing.

  • Direct debtor to his/her local field office or have him/her mail any available evidence and signed statement to MAMPSC-DMS at PO BOX 15531, Kansas City MO, 64106

5. Request for lower offset amount due to hardship

A debtor whose pay is subject to FSO may, at any time, request a review of the amount or percentage withheld based on financial hardship. (See GN 02250.100 for more information.)

IMPORTANT: SSA will not reduce the amount the federal employer withholds from someone's pay if the debt was caused by the debtor’s intentional false statement or willful concealment of or failure to furnish material information. (Willful concealment means an intentional, knowing and purposeful delay in providing or failure to furnish material information.) Do not take action on a request for lower offset amount due to hardship when the debt was caused by the debtor’s intentional false statement or willful concealment of or failure to furnish material information. (See GN 02201.055.)

Do not honor any requests to lower the offset amount when the overpayment was caused for the reasons above.

The procedure for handling a debtor's request for a lower withholding amount depends upon whether SSA can approve the request immediately, or SSA requires financial information from the debtor before deciding on the request. SSA's approval can be granted immediately when: (1) the person agrees to a withholding amount that is at least $10 per pay and which would recover the entire debt within 12 months, or (2) the person agrees to a withholding amount of at least $10 per pay that will recover the debt within 36 months and the person can demonstrate that a higher amount would prevent the payment of ordinary and necessary living expenses.

“Ordinary and necessary living expenses” include fixed expenses such as food, clothing, housing, utilities, maintenance, insurance, tax payments, medical, hospitalization and similar expenses, expenses for the support of others for whom the debtor is legally responsible, and other reasonable and necessary miscellaneous expenses which are part of the debtor’s standard of living. See GN 02201.044B.6. for instructions on processing immediate approvals of hardship requests.

NOTE: A request for reduction of the offset amount due to hardship does not prevent or stop TOP or credit bureau reporting.

6. Immediate approval of hardship request – FO/TSC/PC action

The process for granting an immediate approval of a hardship request is the same for the TSC, FO and PC. Proceed as follows when granting immediate approval:

  • Negotiate the highest withholding amount but not less than $10 per pay. If the debtor alleges not being able to pay $10 per pay, explain that $10 is the minimum amount SSA can accept.

  • If the debtor offers to repay the debt at the rate of at least $10 per pay and that rate would recover the debt within 12 months, enter the negotiated amount or percentage on the FSO Update Offset Information (TRUF) screen. (See MSOM DMS 014.016). This will result in an automated notice to the debtor advising them of the reduced offset amount.

  • If the debtor offers to repay the debt at the rate of at least $10 per pay and that rate would recover the debt within 36 months, advise the debtor that SSA will grant the lower amount if answers to the following questions indicate hardship (i.e., expenses exceed income and assets):

    • What is the amount of your income (weekly or monthly)?

    • How much do you pay each week or month for ordinary and necessary living expenses?

    • Do you have a savings account, certificate of deposit (CD) or an individual retirement account (IRA)? If “yes” record the type of account and the value. If “no”, indicate “caller alleges no assets”.

    • Enter the negotiated dollar amount or percentage on the FSO Update Offset Information (TRUF) screen. (See MSOM DMS 014.016 for more detailed information about that screen.) The system will send an automated notice to the employer and the debtor advising them of the lowered offset amount

7. Immediate approval not possible

a. TSC/PC action

Refer all requests for reduction in offset amount due to hardships that cannot be immediately approved to the MAMPSC DMS at 888-214-3640.

NOTE: MAMPSC-DMS does not make this hardship determination. They will refer the case to the OCALJ.

b. FO action

Forward all hardships that cannot be immediately approved to OCALJ for determination.

Follow instructions below:

  • Input hardship request on the TRSF screen (MSOM DMS014.015)

  • Annotate MBR/SSR Special Message Field—“FSO CASE, Debtor requested hardship.

  • Prepare Folder for the OCALJ and a Fact Sheet (SSA-5002) which includes:

    • debtor’s name

    • debtor’s SSN

    • rationale

    • folder location or indicate unable to locate

    • income and resources/expense determination

  • Print Initial Overpayment Notice and/or any other OP notices available in the Online Retrieval System (ORS) (see MSOM ORS 005.001)

  • · Photocopy all documentation and prepare a coversheet indicating: FSO-HARDSHIP CASE.

  • Fax all documentation to MAMPSC-DMS paperless fax at 877-311-8738 for control. (see note below)

  • Prepare a paper folder with all the documentation and mail it to OCALJ 5107 Leesburg Pike, Suite 1500, Falls Church, VA 22041-3255 – no later than next business day.

  • · Retain copy of documents in an office pending file for 10 days.

  • Within the 10 days, query PCACS or PPL ROQSfor FSO action pending in Paperless. If an action exists then material in FO holding file can be destroyed.

  • If there is no pending action for review on PCACS or PPL ROQS, call the MAMPSC-DMS (888-214-3640) to verify that the hardship request was received. If not received, re-fax material and re-file in FO holding file for another 10 days.

NOTE: The Debt Management Section in MAMPSC is responsible for follow ups on final adjudication of FSO hardship cases referred to OCALJ.

8. Request for reconsideration

Debtors may attempt to request reconsideration of two different aspects of SSA's use of Federal Salary Offset: (1) the overpayment determination (fact/amount of the debt); and (2) the Agency's decision to use federal salary offset to collect the delinquent overpayment.

9. Reconsideration of overpayment determination

Debtors subject to Federal Salary Offset are beyond the 60-day period for requesting reconsideration of the overpayment determination (fact/amount of the debt). Consequently, the TOP/ECO notice that informs debtors about SSA's intent to use collection tools such as FSO, AWG, Treasury Offset Program and credit bureau reporting does not contain language offering the right to request reconsideration.

In response to the FSO notice individuals might question the overpayment determination and request reconsideration on debts subject to FSO. Since overpayments subject to FSO are delinquent and by definition beyond the 60-day period for requesting reconsideration of the overpayment determination, these requests must first be handled in accordance with policy and procedure in GN 03101.020, Good Cause for Extending the Time Limit to File an Appeal.

Proceed as follows when the debtor requests reconsideration of the overpayment determination:

a. TSC action

  • Tell the debtor that he/she had 60 days from the date of SSA's initial notice of overpayment to request reconsideration of the overpayment determination.

  • Tell the debtor that he/she must show good cause for late filing in order for SSA to extend the time to appeal the overpayment determination. Good cause for late filing can be found by SSA when, for example, the person was seriously ill and was prevented from contacting SSA in person, in writing, or through a friend, relative, or other person. See GN 03101.020, Good Cause for Extending the Time Limit to File an Appeal for more information on what constitutes good cause for late filing.

  • Advise the debtor that he/she must submit a signed statement explaining the reason for the delay and documentation to support the explanation.

  • Provide the debtor with the address of the servicing FO, and tell the person to send or deliver the signed statement to that office.

  • Record the action taken on DMS Remarks

IMPORTANT: Do not send the caller a form SSA-561-U2 (Request for Reconsideration).

b. FO action

  • Obtain a signed statement from the debtor explaining the reason for the delay and obtain documentation to support the explanation.

  • Explain to the debtor that SSA will decide whether he/she has shown good cause for late filing and whether to extend the time or dismiss the appeal.

  • Prepare Report of Contact (RC) on the late filing evaluating the debtor’s statement.

  • Forward request, statement, documentation and RC to the PC for good cause determination.

  • Record the action on the DMS Remarks

IMPORTANT: Do not ask the debtor to complete a form SSA-561-U2 (Request for reconsideration). If the person insists on filing that form, accept it and input the request on the Protest/Stop Recovery Request (FO) screen (DRPF). (See MSOM DMS 006.019 for more detailed information about this screen).

c. PC action

  • Make the determination on the issue of good cause for late filing.

  • If good cause for late filing is found, input the request on the DRPR screen if necessary. See MSOM DMS 006.003 for more detailed information about this screen.

  • Process the reconsideration determination according to instructions in GN 02201.025C.4., Overpayment-Reconsideration. If the reconsideration decision did not wholly reverse the initial overpayment determination, diary the case for resumption of FSO in 30 days.

  • If good cause for late filing is not found, dismiss the request for reconsideration.

  • If the dismissed request for reconsideration was previously input to the DRPF/DRPR screen, input a denial to the Fact/Amount Appeal Disposition (DRAD) screen. See MSOM DMS 006.011 for more detailed instructions on this screen. The system will resume FSO activity.

10. Reconsideration of SSA’s decision to use FSO

SSA's regulations at 20 CFR 404.903 (and 416.1403 for title XVI cases) include FSO in the list of administrative actions that are not initial determinations. Therefore, the debtor has no right to a reconsideration request on SSA's decision to use FSO.

TSC/FO/PC should proceed as follows when the person requests reconsideration of SSA's decision to use FSO:

  • Tell the person that SSA's regulations state that FSO is not an initial determination subject to appeals, and that we cannot act on any such request.

  • Tell the person SSA will continue to use FSO to collect the overpayment.

IMPORTANT: Do not solicit a form SSA-561-U2 (Request for Reconsideration) regarding SSA's decision to use FSO.

C. Debtor offers to repay

1. Full refund

a. TSC action

Proceed as follows when the debtor offers to repay:

  • Tell the caller we will accept the full refund by check, money order or credit card and advise the caller of the current balance of the debt.

  • Tell the caller to make a check or money order payable to the “Social Security Administration” and to include the CAN/HUN on the payment. If the person wants to repay by credit card, follow the instructions in GN 02210.153 Paying by Credit Card - Teleservice Center (TSC) Procedure.

  • Tell the caller to send the check or money order to: MATPC, P.O. Box 3430, Philadelphia, PA 19122.

  • Advise the caller that FSO will continue until we receive the full payment. Any amounts withheld in excess will be returned to the debtor.

  • Annotate DMS Remarks with the offer to repay in full

b. FO action

  • Follow the instructions in GN 02403.006 Processing Remittances Received in the FO.

  • If the person is present in the FO, tell him/her that SSA will stop offset.

c. PC action

  • Follow the instructions in GN 02210.214, Debtor Willing to Repay.

NOTE: When the full repayment is posted to the debtor's record, the TOP/ECO system will automatically notify the Treasury to stop Offset. The system will also notify Treasury to stop withholding tax refunds or other Federal payments, and it will update the person's credit record if applicable

2. Installment payments

Regular monthly installment payments will prevent FSO if it has not started. Installment payments will not stop FSO if it has begun.

FSO is an enforced collection that guarantees the recovery of some or all of the debt while the debtor remains a Federal employee. We want to prevent manipulation of the system by people who do not make good faith offers to repay. Also, FSO is a complex process requiring communication among the debtor, SSA, and the Department of Treasury. Therefore, to prevent repeated efforts to stop and resume this complex process, we have decided that installment payments after FSO has begun will not stop that collection method.

IMPORTANT: In any discussion with a person who wants to make installment payments in the hope of stopping offset, advise the person that installment payments will not stop offset if it has begun. SSA will still accept the payments but offset will continue. If FSO has not begun, stress to the person that regular monthly payments are required to prevent SSA's use of FSO. Any lapse in regular payments can result in SSA's use of FSO along with other debt collection methods.

Take the following action to process an installment agreement when FSO has not begun:

a. TSC action

  • Attempt to negotiate a rate of repayment which would permit full recovery within 12 months.

  • If that is not possible, try to establish a rate of repayment which will permit full recovery within 36 months.

  • If that is not possible, minimum payments of at least $10 per month are required unless there are unusual circumstances (e.g., title XVI recipient).

  • If you negotiate an agreement (person agrees to pay back $10 per month or more): (1) Complete a DRIN screen (MSOM DMS 006.014) to reflect the negotiated agreement. (2) Tell the caller to send the payment(s) in the envelope that was provided with the overpayment notice. (3) If the caller does not have the envelope, give him/her the address for sending in remittances: MATPC, P.O. Box 3430, Philadelphia, PA 19122. (4) Record the action taken on DMS Remarks.

  • If the person wishes to pay back less than $10 per month and/or unusual circumstances apply: (1) Refer to the FO via MDW. (2) Advise the caller someone from the FO will contact him/her. (3) Record the action taken on DMS Remarks

b. FO action

  • Follow the instructions in GN 02210.180B.1.

  • Tell the person that an immediate payment, followed by regular monthly payments, could result in the prevention of SSA's use of FSO.

  • If the person is present in the FO and makes a payment, process the remittance per instructions in GN 02403.006.

c. PC action

  • Follow the instructions in GN 02210.214B.

  • Tell the person that an immediate payment, followed by regular monthly payments, could result in the prevention of SSA's use of FSO.

3. Debtor makes compromise offer

Proceed as follows when the debtor makes a compromise offer:

a. TSC action

  • Advise the caller to contact the servicing FO to arrange a compromise settlement.

  • Give the caller the name, address and telephone number of the FO that services his/her current address.

  • Document the request for compromise offer on the DMS Remarks.

  • Do not make any input to stop FSO withholding

b. FO action

  • Follow the instructions in GN 02215.115, FO Handling of Compromise Offers.

  • Tell the debtor that FSO will continue unless we receive the compromised amount.

c. PC action

  • Follow the instructions in GN 02210.215, Debtor Offers to Compromise.

  • Use the Protest/Stop Recovery Request (PC) (DRPR) screen and select “Compromise Offer Made” unless the case was referred from the FO and the input has already been made (see MSOM DMS 006.003) OR if an immediate decision is not possible.

  • The PC should post the decision on the compromise offer on the Record Compromise Decision (DRCD) screen. (See MSOM DMS 006.012).

  • Tell the debtor that FSO will continue unless we receive the compromised amount.

D. Other reports that could affect FSO

1. Debtor alleges non-receipt of the overpaid amount

If a debtor alleges nonreceipt of the overpaid amount, obtain an ACCT/ROAR query and a PHUS query. If the query shows no record of nonreceipt of the payment(s) in question, proceed as follows:

TSC/FO/PSC Action

  • If the debtor had a representative payee, explain that the payment(s) was sent to the payee and there is no indication that payment(s) was not received.

  • If there was no representative payee, explain that our records do not show any evidence of a nonreceipt allegation at the time the initial overpayment notice was sent.

  • If the debtor insists that we provide a photocopy of the check(s) in question, explain that we will investigate but the debt will still be subject to TOP/ECO collection tools (Treasury Offset Program, credit bureau reporting, AWG and FSO). See GN 02406.140 for instructions on requesting check photo copies.

  • If the investigation supports the nonreceipt allegation and the debt is found not to exist, explain that SSA will repay any amounts collected by FSO and/or TOP, and will also delete the debt from the person's credit report.

  • If the investigation does NOT support the nonreceipt allegation, and the debtor still maintains that he/she never received the overpayment amount, follow the instructions in GN 02201.044B.4., Request for Review.

  • Follow GN 02406.117 to handle the nonreceipt allegation for a check and GN 02406.007 for a direct deposit payment (These references apply to Title II and Title XVI payments). DO NOT make a ROAR input.

2. Debtor alleges nonreceipt of FSO 30 day notice

If the debtor alleges never receiving the FSO 30-day notice, proceed as follows:

a. TSC action

  • Advise the debtor to submit a statement regarding nonreceipt of the notice along with his/her current address and telephone number to the FO in person or by mail.

  • Provide the address and telephone number of the FO that services the debtor.

  • Explain to the debtor that applicable TOP/ECO collection tools (Treasury Offset Program, credit bureau reporting and AWG and FSO) will continue to apply unless we can confirm his/her allegation.

b. FO action

  • Obtain a statement from the debtor regarding nonreceipt of the notice along with his/her current address.

  • Forward material to the PC annotated “Necessary Action TOP/ECO Case – Do Not Backlog.”

  • Explain to the debtor that TOP/ECO will continue to apply unless we can confirm his/her allegation through a folder review.

  • If, as a result of a folder review request, the claims folder is in the FO, check for an undeliverable notice. If present:

  • Advise the debtor that further investigation is necessary.

  • Return the folder to the PC, clearly marked “TOP/ECO – Undeliverable Overpayment Notice in File – Do Not Backlog.”

c. PC action - undeliverable FSO 30 day notice was remailed

Review the claims folder to determine if the notice was returned as undeliverable. If the undeliverable notice was remailed, take the following actions:

  • Tell the debtor the date the new notice was mailed.

  • Tell the debtor that the overpayment is still subject to collection by TOP/ECO tools.

d. PC action - undeliverable FSO 30 day notice not remailed

If a subsequent notice was not mailed, the debtor has the right to a full administrative review process. Take the following actions if the original notice was returned as undeliverable and a subsequent notice was not mailed:

  • Correct the address screen by completing the Address/Direct Deposit/Phone (PEAD) screen (MSOM T2PE 003.002). 

  • Redate and mail the overpayment notice to the debtor's current address.

  • Delete the old overpayment on ROAR via the Transaction Correction (SMTC) screen (MSOM DMS 002.011).

  • Query ROAR the following day to verify deletion. When deleted, reestablish the overpayment as a new debt on ROAR via the Establish Debt (SMED) screen (MSOM DMS 002.003). Use the current date as the establishment date.

NOTE: The above actions will delete the debt from the Treasury Offset Program and from FSO until the debt becomes delinquent and meets all TOP/ECO selection criteria. The preceding actions will not, however, delete the debt from the credit bureau if it was previously reported as delinquent. Advise the debt management program analyst regarding the need to delete the debt from the credit bureau report.

e. PC action - no evidence to support allegation of nonreceipt of notice

If there is no evidence to support the debtor's allegations about not receiving the notice, take the following actions:

  • Advise the debtor (by telephone, if possible) accordingly.

  • Explain that since there is no evidence that the notice was returned as undeliverable by the post office, we must proceed on the assumption that the notice was received.

  • Document the DMS Remarks (RMKS) screen with the information about the debtor contact

NOTE: If the debtor alleges non-receipt of the initial TOP/ECO notice follow the instructions in GN 02201.030D.8.

3. Report of bankruptcy proceeding

Proceed as follows when you receive a report that a bankruptcy petition is pending or that a debt has been discharged in bankruptcy.

a. TSC action

  • Tell the caller to submit the bankruptcy petition or discharge order to the servicing FO.

  • Provide the address and telephone number of the servicing FO.

  • Explain that all debt collection processes will continue until SSA receives and reviews the bankruptcy information and determines that recovery efforts should stop.

  • Explain that if the person provides the bankruptcy informatio