BASIC (01-08)

DI 81020.010 Paper Folder Indicators (PFI)

A. General

Most disability claims are established in the Electronic Disability Collect System (EDCS). For a majority of these claims, the Certified Electronic Folder (CEF) is the agency’s official record. Sometimes, a CEF exclusion exists, so a paper folder must be created for the entire case. (See Certified Electronic Folder (CEF) Exclusions - DI 81010.030, for more information about CEF exclusions). In order to tell what kind of folder has been created for each disability claim, eDib displays PFIs.

PFIs inform case processing components if:

  • The official folder for the current filing is paper or a CEF; and

  • To expect a paper folder for the current filing or a prior filing when the case is transferred.

It is extremely important that the PFIs are set correctly. Receiving offices reject jurisdiction of an electronic case if they do not receive a paper folder within the present number of days established for their office by the Regional Office (RO) when the PFI indicates a paper folder for the current claim is being sent (see Electronic Folder Interface (EFI) Download - DI 81020.005B.).

NOTE: For eCDR PFIs, see Transferring the Electronic Continuing Disability Review (eCDR) - DI 81010.240B. and Receipting an eCDR -DI 81020.205E.

B. Field Office (FO) Initially Establishes PFIs During Case Transfer

During the case transfer process, the FO indicates:

  • If the current filing is a CEF or a paper folder; and

  • If there is a prior paper file associated with the current filing.

It is the responsibility of the Disability Determinations Services (DDS) to:

  • Verify the accuracy of the PFI’s at case receipt; and

  • Update the PFIs if they are incorrect or if a paper folder is identified or created at a later stage in the adjudicative process.

C. Verifying Paper Folder Indicators (PFIs) at Case Receipt

The DDS uses PFIs during case receipt to determine whether:

  • The official folder for the case is a CEF or a paper folder; and

  • They can receipt the case immediately or must wait until receiving a paper folder.

DDS should view and update PFIs on the DDS case processing system or on eView.

1. PFIs for the Current Filing

This PFI notifies the DDS if the current filing is a CEF or a paper folder.

a. PFI Indicates a current CEF

If the PFI indicates the current case is a CEF:

  • The official folder is a CEF; and

  • Receipt the case using the Electronic Folder Interface (EFI) Download (see Electronic Claim Receipt Process - DI 81020.015).

b. PFI Indicates a Current Paper Folder

If the PFI indicates the current case is a paper folder:

  • Do not receipt this case until receiving a paper folder as the official agency folder is paper; and

  • Maintain the paper folder for the life of the case.

NOTE: If receipt of the paper folder is not within 30 days, reject jurisdiction back to the transferring office with a reason “Receipt of paper folder not within 30 days.”

2. PFIs for a Prior Filing

This PFI notifies the DDS if a prior paper folder is associated with the current filing and if it is being mailed to the DDS.

a. PFI Indicates Sending a Prior Paper Folder

If sending a prior paper folder to the DDS, the PFI indicates that:

  • The transferring office is sending a paper folder from a prior filing.

  • DDS receipts the case without receiving the prior paper folder if the current filing’s SSA-827 (Authorization to Disclose Information to the Social Security Administration [SSA]) is available (i.e., the SSA-827 faxed into the CEF).

  • If DDS does not receive the prior paper folder, update the PFI accordingly.

NOTE: If the prior paper folder is necessary to process the case, and it is not received in a reasonable amount of time by the DDS, contact the FO to determine the status of the prior paper folder.

b. PFI Indicates not Sending Prior Paper Folder

If the PFI indicates not sending a prior paper folder to the DDS:

  • The FO is not sending a prior paper folder;

  • Receipt the case using the EFI Download (see Electronic Claim Receipt Process -