Whenever a field office (FO) becomes aware that a money order company has declared
bankruptcy, or taken some other action which renders the money orders worthless, the
FO takes the following actions:
Immediately notifies the regional office, which will then FAX the information about
the bankruptcy to the Office of Financial Policy and Operations (OFPO) in Baltimore,
at 410-965-0384. OFPO will issue an appropriate NEWS item; and
Stop accepting money orders from that company.
In those cases where the Mid-Atlantic Payment Service Center (MATPSC) learns about
the problem with the money order company after a money order has been accepted, MATPSC
will notify OFPO by fax at the number above, and forward the returned remittance and
a photocopy of the Field Office Remittance Transmittal (FORT) to the FO.
The FO takes the following actions:
Notify the remitter that the money order was not acceptable, and request a replacement
If the remitter submits a replacement remittance, issue a new receipt, and forward
the payment to the MATPSC via a new FORT.
Delete the original receipt in DMS, see MS DMS 004.011, after cross-referencing it
to the remittance ID field of the new receipt.
Provide the remitter with as much information as available, so the remitter may file
a claim against the money order company.
If the remittance is for an installment, extend the remitter's installment agreement
timeframe an additional month. See MS DMS 006.014.
The Social Security Administration (SSA) may not give credit for the returned remittance
if it was purchased by the debtor; however, if SSA purchased the money order to process
a cash remittance, credit the debtor's account and file a claim against the company
to recover the purchase price of the money order.