TN 1 (04-14)

DI 23015.001 Claimant Does Not Wish to Pursue Claim or Requests to Withdraw the Application

When a claimant (or proper applicant on the claimant’s behalf) indicates that he or she does not wish to pursue a disability claim or submits a written request to withdraw a disability application, it is important to determine the claimant’s intent. Withdrawing the application could be more disadvantageous to the claimant than choosing not to pursue the claim. The following subsections provide the applicable processing instructions for the Disability Determination Services (DDS) when a claimant does not wish to pursue a claim or requests to withdraw an application.

NOTE: For additional information on the differences between a withdrawal and a disallowance, see Withdrawal vs. Disallowance in GN 00206.015.

A. DDS procedures when a claimant does not wish to pursue a claim

If a claimant indicates that he or she does not wish to pursue a claim, it may be preferable to “disallow” the claim, rather than to withdraw the application. Disallowing the claim allows the claimant to retain his or her appeal rights.

1. Claimant submits request not to pursue claim to the FO when a claim is in the DDS

A claimant may notify the field office (FO) or the DDS that he or she does not wish to pursue a claim. If the claimant notifies the FO and the claim is in the DDS, the FO will notify the DDS by telephone. When the FO informs the DDS that the claimant does not wish to pursue the claim, discontinue development of the evidence and take the following actions:

  1. Complete any pending development that does not require the claimant’s participation;

  2. Document in the case development summary that the claimant does not wish to pursue the claim;

  3. Prepare a determination based on the evidence in file, unless you are still waiting for medical evidence from a source other than the claimant;

  4. Send the appropriate notice indicating the actual development actions taken:

    • the claimant did not wish to pursue the claim,

    • an explanation of the reason(s) for the determination, and

    • the claimant’s appeal rights.

  5. Return jurisdiction of the electronic claim to the FO; or

  6. Complete Form SSA-408 (Route Slip) and return the paper folder to the FO.

2. Claimant submits request not to pursue claim to the DDS

When the claimant notifies DDS that he or she does not wish to pursue the claim, discontinue development of the evidence and take the following actions shown in DI 23015.001A.1.a. through DI 23015.001A.1.f. in this section.

B. DDS procedures when a claimant requests to withdraw an application

When a claimant requests to withdraw an application, instead of choosing not to pursue the claim, the claimant forfeits all rights flowing from the application. If the claimant files a new application, the new application might cover a later period than the withdrawn application. When the FO approves the claimant’s request to withdraw an application, the application is nullified and the decision to approve the withdrawal may not be appealed. However, a claimant may cancel an approved request to withdraw an application by filing a cancellation request within 60 days after the date of the approval notice.

NOTE: If the claimant does not wish to pursue the claim, see instructions in DI 23015.001A in this section.

1. Claimant submits a withdrawal request to the FO when a claim is in the DDS

When a claimant submits a written request to withdraw an application to the FO and the claim is in the DDS, the DDS receives an Update-After-Transfer alert in eView and takes the following actions:

  • do not initiate further development;

  • determine if pending development can be canceled to avoid unnecessary payment for evidence; or

  • complete any pending development that does not require the claimant's participation; and

  • do not prepare a determination; (for additional information see DI 11010.075);

  • close the claim with an “ND” (No Determination) decision code according to the electronic instructions in DI 81020.127, or the paper instructions in DI 32005.020; and

  • add a message to the electronic folder (according to the