Generally, checks that are issued after death are returned in the mail or brought
into the servicing field office; however, sometimes these checks are not returned
and remain outstanding. In Titles II and XVI, when a death input is transmitted to
the Master Beneficiary Record (MBR) or Supplemental Security Income Record (SSR),
the system generates an E-stop for each check issued after the posted date of death,
unless the E-stop must be input manually (see Manual E-Stop Process GN 02408.012).
The E-stop alerts the Department of the Treasury (DT) of the non-entitlement of the
payment due to death and identifies the payment in question. DT investigates the status
of the check and provides SSA with a disposition code indicating whether the check
remains outstanding or has been cashed (see Treasury RFC and CSD Disposition Codes
SM 00609.610 and How to Respond to Treasury Process Messages SM 01315.200).
If a check has been cashed, DT reclaims the funds from the presenting financial institution
(FI) based on the E-stop (see Check Reclamation – Titles II and XVI, GN 02408.301). If the check has not been cashed or returned, the E-stop prompts DT to cancel the
check and return credit to SSA. If the check is subsequently cashed, it is detected
with DT’s Check Operations Re-engineering Effort (CORE) system at the Richmond Federal
Reserve Bank (RFRB) and returned unpaid to the presenting FI (GN 02408.006).
E-stops are not automatically generated, and should not be input manually, on check
payments made to a representative payee after the death of the beneficiary. These
payments after death are processed as overpayments made to the representative payee
(see GN 02201.000).
IMPORTANT: It is important for SSA to post the date of death promptly, as DT can only reclaim
check payments going back 12 months from the date that SSA learns of the death (see
02408.005B.5. in this section). For Limited Payability Death Cases, see GN 02401.917.