TN 34 (10-15)

GN 02607.160 Title II Prisoner Suspension Provisions

A. Prisoner suspension policies beginning 4/1/2000

1. Suspension requirements

a. Beneficiaries affected

All Title II beneficiaries are affected.

b. Rules for suspension

Suspend benefits when a beneficiary meets both of the following:

  • convicted of a criminal offense and sentenced to a period of confinement in a correctional facility or institution; and

  • based on that conviction, remains confined in a United States (U.S.) correctional facility or institution for more than 30 continuous days.

2. Conviction and sentencing dates

a. Conviction date

The conviction date is the date that a court finds a defendant guilty or accepts a guilty plea or other plea that is equivalent to a guilty plea. For more information on guilty pleas, see GN 02607.001B.2.

b. Sentencing date

After a court convicts a defendant, the court decides on the appropriate punishment (probation, length of confinement, place of confinement) during the sentencing phase of a criminal case. The sentence fulfills the statutory requirement that a court convict a beneficiary of a crime before we suspend benefits.

Sentencing may immediately follow the conviction or there may be a delay in sentencing. When there is a delay, use the sentencing date as the conviction date.

NOTE: The sentencing is the last part of a defendant’s conviction process. If a beneficiary is convicted on April 12, 2015, but is not sentenced for his or her crime until November 22, 2015, the actual conviction date for this beneficiary is November 22, 2015.

3. Confinement date

Confinement begins on the date a U.S. correctional facility admits the beneficiary into custody after sentencing. Confinement ends with:

  • a pardon;

  • a parole; or

  • the completion of the sentence and an official release.

NOTE: Do not consider the time confined prior to sentencing (time spent in jail awaiting completion of the trial) in determining the confinement begin date.

4. Suspension effective date

Suspension is effective with the month (including any part of that month) a convicted beneficiary begins confinement after court sentencing.

Do not input the suspension until the 31st day of continuous confinement. To determine the 31st day of continuous confinement, count 30 consecutive days from the day the correctional facility took custody of the beneficiary after sentencing.

EXAMPLE 1: The police arrested Kate on 12/12/2014 and held her in jail while awaiting trial. The court convicted Kate on 02/27/2015 and sentenced her to 18 months imprisonment on 03/28/2015. The court released Kate from jail allowing her time to get her affairs in order. Kate reported to the prison on 04/05/2015.

The 31st day of continuous confinement is 05/05/2015 (04/05/2015, the day the correctional facility took custody, plus 30 continuous days = 05/05/2015). On 05/05/2015, we retroactively suspend Kate’s benefits effective 04/2015 and continuing.

EXAMPLE 2: The police arrested Bill on 06/15/2015. Bill could not make bail and stayed in jail until he went to trial. The court convicted and sentenced Bill to 60 days in jail on 06/28/2015. Upon sentencing, the court released Bill from jail allowing him time to get his affairs in order. Bill returned to jail on 07/05/2015 and remained for 60 days.

The 31st day of continuous confinement is 08/04/2015 (07/05/2015, the day the correctional facility took custody, plus 30 continuous days = 08/04/2015).

On 08/04/2015, we retroactively suspended Bill's benefits effective 07/2015.

B. Prisoner suspension policies prior to 4/1/2000

1. Confinement 10/01/1980 through 04/30/1983

a. Beneficiaries affected

Disabled number holders and disabled children: HA, HC, or C, are affected.

b. Rules for suspension

Suspend Title II benefits effective with the month the beneficiary was both:

  • convicted of a felony; and

  • confined to a correctional institution.

c. Other rules on payment

Pay disabled beneficiaries who were participating actively and satisfactorily in a vocational rehabilitation program approved for the individual by a court of law. The program must have resulted in the individual being able to engage in substantial gainful activity upon release and within a reasonable time.

2. Confinement 05/01/1983 through 01/31/1995

a. Beneficiaries affected

All Title II beneficiaries are affected.

b. Rules for suspension

Suspend Title II benefits effective with the month the beneficiary was both: