TN 6 (05-02)

RS 01601.260 Use of Earnings By RRB and SSA

A. POLICY - RRB USE OF SS EARNINGS

  1. RRB uses SS earnings of the worker in computing an annuity regardless of any SS benefits payable, and

  2. In life cases, the SS monthly benefits payable may be subtracted from the RR annuity.

  3. In death cases, no SSA benefits are payable on the deceased worker's record if RR survivor insured status exists (RS 01601.110).

B. POLICY - SSA USE OF RR COMPENSATION

1. Retirement and Disability Benefits Claims

  1. If the worker has less than 120 RR service months or effective 01/01/2002 less than 60 RR service months after December 31, 1995, SSA uses the RR earnings earned after 1936 for both insured status and benefit computation purposes. (Note that RR service before 1937 and MS creditable under the RR count towards the 120-month test.) (See RS 01601.400A.) Effective 01/01/2002, creditable military service time after December 31, 1995 counts toward the 60 month requirement.

  2. If the worker has 120 RR service months or effective 01/01/2002, if less than 120 RR service months but with at least 60 service months after December 31, 1995, SSA does not use any RR earnings in a life case.

  3. If after entitlement the worker acquires 120 months of RR service or effective 01/01/2002, has less than 120 months of RR service but has acquired 60 months of RR service after December 31, 1995, SSA redetermines any SS benefit to exclude any RR wages as of the month that the 120th month was acquired or the later of when the 60th month of RR service was acquired or 01/01/2002. Insured status may be lost. Benefits paid before the month of attainment of the 120th month of RR service or effective 01/01/2002, benefits paid before the month of attainment of the 60th month of RR service after December 31, 1995 or 01/01/2002 are not affected. Depending on the filing date the certification of the SS benefit may have to be changed from Treasury to RRB. (See RS 01601.310C.2. and RS 01602.340.)

  4. The maximum amount creditable as RR wages in a month is:

    01/37 - 06/54 -- $300

    07/54 - 05/59 -- $350

    06/59 - 10/63 -- $400

    11/63 - 09/65 -- $450

    10/65 on, $450 or 1/12 of the annual SS wage base, whichever is higher.

  5. If the NH was awarded a RR retirement annuity (disability or age) before 10/01/51, which is currently payable and based on less than 120 months of RR service, treat the NH as having 120 months of RR service. Do not credit RR wages for title II benefits.

2. Disability Freeze Claims

In disability freeze only cases, the NH's RR compensation after 1936 is considered as wages under the SS Act to meet the 20/40 fully insured, or age 31 earnings requirement. It is used for the freeze whether the NH has 120 or more months of RR service or effective 01/01/2002, if less than 120 RR service months but with at least 60 months of RR service after December 31, 1995 or, whether RRB has used the RR compensation in computing the NHs disability or retirement annuity.

3. Survivor Claims

The NHs RR compensation may be used by SSA only if RRB de