TN 15 (05-12)

GN 02607.350 Provisions for Sexually Dangerous Person (SDP) Verdicts for Confinements Beginning 04/01/2000 and Continuing

A. SDP confinements beginning 04/01/2000 and continuing

NOTE: Public Law 106-170 (enacted 12/17/1999 and effective 04/01/2000) created two significant changes to the prisoner suspension policies. The changes are:

  • The court must charge and convict the beneficiary with a criminal offense. The requirement that the criminal offense carry a sentence of imprisonment for more than one year no longer applies.

  • A beneficiary must be under a court order as a SDP as stated in GN 02607.340A and must remain confined in the institution for more than 30 continuous days before we suspend title II benefits.

1. Determine if we must suspend benefits due to SDP for confinements 04/01/2000 and continuing

Enforce the SDP nonpayment provisions only in those states that have formal laws expressly providing for court ordered confinement of SDP.

If you are unsure whether the state has a SDP law, contact your Regional Prisoner Coordinator (RPC). To find the RPC and processing center contact information, see GN 02607.990A.2.

a. SDP facts

In the United States, SDP laws allow states or the federal government to confine a person already in custody at a correctional institution after serving his or her sentence indefinitely, if the person has a "mental abnormality" or personality disorder and is likely to engage in sexual offenses, if released. SDP laws generally have three requirements:

  • a conviction for a sexually violent crime, or conduct that would be a crime,

  • a "mental abnormality" or personality disorder (e.g., often pedophilia, rape, etc.), and

  • the offender is likely to reoffend unless confined in a secure facility.

b. Legal proceedings involving SDP

Stage 1 -- Legal order for psychological evaluation

Typically, after the beneficiary completes serving his or her sentence, the correctional institution transfers the beneficiary to a mental institution for psychological evaluation. (The beneficiary served a sentence in the correctional institution for a crime that includes a sexual offense.) A court will issue a temporary legal order or other similar legal process detaining a beneficiary for psychological evaluation or testing to determine if the beneficiary is sexually dangerous. This legal detaining order is not the official final court order for commitment. Benefits will remain in prisoner suspension (i.e., reason for suspension or termination (RFST) “PRISON” and LAF S7) while the institution conducts the psychological testing.

NOTE: In some instances, the preliminary evaluation may take place prior to the completion of the beneficiary's prison sentence. In that case, a court would not issue a temporary detainment order, as one would not be necessary.

Stage 2 -- Court order declaring beneficiary as SDP

A court issues a final verdict, finding, or a ruling that declares a beneficiary sexually dangerous or a sexual predator based on state law. Such findings occur because the court reviewed the evidence and evaluations during the course of the administrative or judicial process set forth in federal or state law pertaining to confinement of a SDP.

Stage 3 -- Confinement in an institution

Beginning in 04/2000, the law added another stipulation to the SDP provisions. After the court declares the beneficiary as SDP, he or she must remain confined in the institution for more than 30 continuous days before the SDP suspension begins. Do not reinstate benefits during this more than 30 continuous day period unless the institution officially releases the beneficiary. For more information on SDP confinement, refer to GN 02607.350A.3. (in this section).

2. Determining the SDP suspension effective date

Suspend benefits to a SDP effective 12/1999 or later. The effective suspension date is the date of the final court order to commit the beneficiary as SDP. Beginning 04/2000, the beneficiary must remain confined in a mental institution for more than 30 continuous days after the SDP court order date.

NOTE: Benefits to SDPs are generally already in prisoner suspense before the mental institution permanently confines them following a court order. Leave the "RFST code of "PRISON" and LAF code S7 on the master beneficiary record (MBR) during the psychological evaluation period. Post a new RFST code of "PREDTR" on the MBR once the court declares the beneficiary as SDP and issues a commitment order to an institution for more than 30 days.

3. SDP beneficiary confinement effective 04/01/00

For title II Prisoner Update Processing System (PUPS) purposes, the conviction date equals 31 days after the SDP verdict or commitment order, whichever date is later. Confinement already exists because the correctional institution transferred the beneficiary directly from the correctional facility to the institution where the psychological examination took place. Confinement in an institution continues without interruption. Confinement includes either of the following factors:

Confined beneficiaries include those who are:

  • confined by court order as described in GN 02607.350A.1.b. (in this section);

  • temporarily hospitalized outside the facility; or

  • escapees or those who fail to report to begin court ordered confinement.

Confinement begins with:

  • the confinement in any U.S. facility following a final court order, i.e., confinement begins when the individual is both confined; and

  • under a final court order as a SDP.

NOTE (l): Suspend benefits while the institution detains the beneficiary for psychological testing or evaluation, even though this period precedes the issuance of the final court order.

NOTE (2): Suspend benefits as SDP after the court issues a final court order to confine the beneficiary for more than 30 continuous days.

Confinement ends with:

  • conditional release (official release from the institution that is subject to continued supervision or treatment and where the institution no longer provides for the beneficiary’s basic living needs). For SDP reinstatement guidelines , refer to GN 02607.854; or

  • official unconditional release (formal permanent release) from an institution and the institution ceases to provide for the beneficiary’s basic living needs.

NOTE: Count "more than 30 continuous days" as follows: Date of court order plus 30 consecutive calendar days equals 31 or more days. Count the day the court issues the SDP commitment order as the first day of the period. Then add 30 consecutive days to this day to equal 31 or more days.

Example

The court convicted Jackie, a title II disability beneficiary, of a sexual crime on 02/22/1995. The court sentenced Jackie to 5 years in a women's prison. We suspended Jackie's title II benefits effective 02/1995 for prisoner suspension (RFST PRISON).

The state where Jackie committed her crime passed a SDP law on 11/30/1999. After Jackie completes her prison sentence in 02/2000 for conviction of a sexual crime, state law requires that the sheriff transfer her to a mental hospital for psychological evaluation to determine if she is sexually dangerous.

On 02/23/2000, the state court issued a temporary detainment order and the sheriff transferred Jackie to a mental hospital for psychological evaluation.

The mental hospital submitted the psychological evaluation to the court on 04/10/2000. The court issued a final order declaring Jackie as a sexual predator (e.g., sexually dangerous) on 04/11/2000. The court also ordered Jackie’s confinement to the mental institution indefinitely.

We suspended Jackie's title II disability benefits beginning 02/1995 (LAF S7, RFST PRISON) when the court convicted her of a sexual crime and never reinstated her benefits during the SDP psychological evaluation. We changed the MBR RFST code from “PRISON” to “PREDTR” after Jackie served more than 30 continuous days in the institution as a SDP; i.e., 05/11/2000.

The conviction date (commitment) for Jackie is 04/11/2000; the date the court issued the order to commit Jackie to a mental institution for confinement. Jackie's SDP suspension begins on 04/11/2000 and her title II benefits will remain suspended until the court officially releases her from the institution.

4. Coding the SDP decision to the MBR

a. Coding during the psychological evaluation

Process the MBR coding for the psychological detainment period as follows:

  • Leave the HISTORY line reason for suspension or termination (HRFST) code of PRISON and suspension code LAF S7 on the MBR for the SDP psychological evaluation period.

  • Do not make any changes to the PRSNDATA line on the MBR.

b. SDP suspension coding

Once the court issues an official order declaring the beneficiary as SDP and confines him or her to an institution, process the SDP decision via MACADE/MADCAP as follows:

  • Post a new HISTORY HRFST code of "PREDTR" to the MBR effective with the date of the commitment order or 12/99, whichever date is later. Benefits remain in LAF S7 suspension status.

  • Annotate new entries to the PRSNDATA line for the SDP suspension period.

  • Code a SUSPENSE STOP date equal to the month before the SDP suspension effective date on the current PRISON suspension.

  • Add a new PRSNDATA line on the MBR for the SDP suspension. Annotate a SUSPENSE START date equal to the SDP suspension effective date. Add the CONFINE TYPE of PREDTR.

B. SDP suspension does not apply

1. Beneficiary is not a SDP

Do not suspend benefits to a SDP beneficiary if:

  • the institution does not immediately confine the beneficiary after serving his or her prison sentence;

  • the court did not convict the beneficiary of a sexual crime and the beneficiary will not complete a sentence for conviction of such a crime; i.e., beneficiaries who are considered not guilty by reason of insanity (NGRI) or incompetent to stand trial (IST);

  • the beneficiary completes his or her psychological evaluation (Stage 1) and the results of the evaluation conclude that the beneficiary is not “sexually dangerous." For information about Stage 1 of the psychological evaluation, refer to GN 02607.350A.1.b. (in this section).

NOTE: Reinstate benefits, if appropriate, when the beneficiary provides official proof of his or her release from the correctional or mental institution. Reinstate benefits effective with the month after the month the correctional or mental institution officially released the inmate. For SDP reinstatement guidelines, refer to GN 02607.854.

2. Beneficiary is not confined

Confinement does not include:

  • release from the care and supervision of the confining institution; and

  • situations where the institution ceases to provide for the beneficiary's basic living needs; or

  • residence at an institution for 30 days or less.

C. Payment of auxiliary benefits when the wage earner or disabled wage earner is a SDP

Payment continues to all auxiliaries on the account when we must suspend the wage earner’s or disabled wage earner’s benefits due to SDP.

D. Auxiliary or the survivor beneficiary is a SDP

If the SDP is an auxiliary or survivor beneficiary, suspend benefits as indicated in GN 02607.350A (in this section).

Adjust benefits to the other beneficiaries on the account under the deduction-before-reduction-procedure. For more information on the deduction-before-reduction procedure, refer to GN 02603.040.


To Link to this section - Use this URL:
http://policy.ssa.gov/poms.nsf/lnx/0202607350
GN 02607.350 - Provisions for Sexually Dangerous Person (SDP) Verdicts for Confinements Beginning 04/01/2000 and Continuing - 05/17/2012
Batch run: 05/17/2012
Rev:05/17/2012