GN BOS03103.080 FO Procedures for Forwarding HA-501-U5 (Request for Hearing by Administrative Law Judge) and Folder to HO

A. Folder Cannot Be Located in Field Office

When the claims folder is not or cannot be located in the FO, follow the procedures for folder retrieval in GN 03105.020, GN 03103.080 and GN BOS03105.150. Additional information on searching techniques is shown below and may assist you in determining the correct folder location.

1. Title XVI FO Search Actions

The location for most title XVI folders can be determined by reviewing the CCTL line (the second line) on the SSID. Both the current location and the previous location are displayed. Assistance in interpreting this data can be found in SM 01201.100 and SM 01201.300. Instructions for requesting title XVI folders can be found in SM 01201.205 - SM 01201.235. If further folder location history is required, see SM 01201.105 on how to request an off-line folder location query.

If properly updated, the CCTL will show the location of the initial claims folder. If the folder received does not include the appropriate material (e.g., it includes redetermination material rather than the initial claims material), a review of the DDSQ or HAO4 query may provide alternate locations to search. Instructions for reading these queries can be found in SM 06002.200 respectively. You may also want to check the TRAN field on the SSID or a MSSICS WMS query (using 3 and 08 on the MSSI menu) to see what other offices may have handled the case.

NOTE: In concurrent disability cases, the disability claims material will be located in the Title II folder.

2. Title II FO Search Actions

For title II initial claims, always query PCACS first in case the file you need has been sent to the PSC. However, initial claims denials and reconsideration denials do not directly update PCACS, they must be receipted into a processing center before a PCACS record is created. When the hearing is filed, check the FO code that processed the reconsideration segment, and contact that FO. If that FO no longer has the file, check the DW01 on the MCS segment or the Special Message field on the MBR for information on where the folder was sent. If the FO has evidence that the folder was recently sent to the processing center for filing, but the PCACS record has not yet been created, establish a control to check PCACS weekly. When the record is established request the folder per the instructions in GN BOS03103.080C. If, after an exhaustive search of all possible locations for the folder, it is indicated that the folder will not be located, undertake reconstruction activities immediately.

For title II post-entitlement folders, if the folder you need is reflected on the PCACS query, request the folder via PCACS. If PCACS is NIF, the prior folder was never receipted into the processing center or was destroyed. If PCACS is NIF, check the NDDS query, the HA04 query, the MDW, and the latest MCS segment of record to see if the folder was sent from a PSC to a non-PSC site. If all these queries are NIF, you will not be able to locate the file and reconstruction activities should be undertaken immediately.

NOTE: In disability adoption cases, the disability claims material may be located in the folder of initial filing.

B. Development indicates folder is in another FO, Regional Office Component (e.g. DQB), or DDS

References: GN 03105.020, GN 03103.080E - GN 03103.080F, DI 12010.000.

Folder Request:

  1. The request for the folder should be made within 1 business day of the request for appeal.

  2. Telephone the component to request the folder.

    NOTE: If the folder is in the DDS, phone the examiner listed on the DDSQ for the folder. In addition, see the special instructions in DI 12010.000. If the folder is in the DQB, phone a team leader in that component to request the folder.

  3. Send a copy of the hearings request to ODAR, along with a copy of the "Folder Retrieval Checklist", Exhibit 2, with the pertinent items in Sections I, II, and III completed.

  4. If the folder has not been received in 10 business days, query for folder movement.

  5. If no folder movement is indicated, telephone a supervisor/team leader in the component for current status of your request.

  6. If the folder is not received within 10 business days of your follow-up telephone call, query again for folder movement.

  7. If the query does not indicate that the folder has been sent to the servicing component (i.e. ODAR), escalate the issue to the FO manager.

  8. FO management makes a manager-to-manager call within 1 business day.

  9. If that call does not reveal that the folder has been located and is on its way, the FO manager orders reconstruction.

C. Development indicates folder is located in a Program Service Center (PSC) or the Office of Central Operations (OCO)

References: GN 03105.020, GN 03103.080F.5, DI 12010.000

Folder Request:

  1. The request for the folder should be made within 1 business day of the request for appeal.

  2. If the folder you need is reflected on the PCACS query with a PSC location, request it via PCACS. If it not on PCACS, but it is known that PSC has the folder, request the folder via MDW. If the folder has recently been sent to the PSC for filing under routine forwarding activities, continue checking the PCACS until it reflects a PSC location.

  3. Send a copy of the hearings request to ODAR, along with a copy of the "Folder Retrieval Checklist", Exhibit 2, with the pertinent items in Sections I, II, and III completed.

  4. If the folder has not been received in 15 business days, query for folder movement.

  5. If there has been no movement at all, no action is needed at this point.

    NOTE: PCACS automatically generates a "Second Request" in 14 calendar days when no folder movement is recorded.

  6. If the query shows folder movement that does not reflect that the folder is in transit to you, telephone the PSC/OCO module for status.

    NOTE: Use the TRIDE for telephone numbers. For folders located in the OCO Mega-site (location AUXRH on PCACS), use the regular module phone numbers, rather than the special pilot phone numbers.

  7. If the folder is not received within 10 business days of your follow-up, query again for folder movement.

  8. If the query does not reflect that the folder is in transit, escalate the issue to FO management.

  9. FO management should phone the PSC Mod manager within 1 business day to request action.

  10. If a satisfactory response (e.g., folder is on its way, folder is NIF) is not received from the PSC manager, the FO manager should call the RSI section of the Program Policy and Systems Team (PPST) at (617) 565-2882 for additional assistance.

  11. If PPST is unable to confirm with the analyst staff of the PSC that the folder has been located and is on its way to the field office, the FO manager orders reconstruction.

D. Development indicates folder is located in the FRC

References: GN 03105.020, SM 01201.210, EM-11058 dated 09/13/2011 titled: Suspension of All Shipments to the Folder Servicing Operation (FSO), AM-12019 SEN dated 01/31/2012 titled: Folder Shipment – Closure of the Folder Servicing Operation (FSO) Folder Request:

Folder Request:

  1. The request for the folder should be made within 1 business day of the request for appeal.

  2. Use AR:33 to recall the folder from NRC when the SSI2/CCTL or SSICS off-line query displays FRC: L00 or Lnn.

  3. Send a copy of the hearings request to ODAR, along with a copy of the "Folder Retrieval Checklist", Exhibit 2, with the pertinent items in Sections I, II and III completed.

  4. When the FRC location field on SSICS = L47 or is BLANK (meaning the SSI claims folder has been destroyed or no claims folder is stored in an FRC), SSICS sends an alert message of "No Folder in FRC; Recalling PE Material" to the requesting FO. WHENEVER YOU RECEIVE SUCH A MESSAGE, YOU NEED TO START RECONSTRUCTION OF THE FOLDER IMMEDIATELY. The PE material will only be useful for hearings on PE issues.

  5. After the initial request, if no message as in item 4 above has been received, and you have not received the folder in 25 business days, query for folder movement.

    NOTE: See SM 01201.210 to determine folder movement for title XVI files.

  6. If there has been no folder movement, escalate the issue to FO management.

  7. FO management should call the SSI section of PPST at (617) 565-2887 for additional follow-up with the FRC.

  8. The information the SSI Team receives from the FRC will be shared with the FO manager and will be used to determine if reconstruction should begin.

NOTE: All Title XVI (SSI) Folders, previously located at the Folder Servicing Operation (FSO) have been consolidated into the National Records Center (SSANRC, and the FSO is closed.


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GN BOS03103.080 - FO Procedures for Forwarding HA-501-U5 (Request for Hearing by Administrative Law Judge) and Folder to HO - 06/04/2012
Batch run: 06/04/2012
Rev:06/04/2012