TN 9 (12-00)
SI 00502.158 Individuals Who Received Informal Denials Based On Alien Eligibility Law In Effect Prior To 8/5/97
Individuals who inquired about supplemental security income (SSI) benefits on or after 8/22/96 may have received informal denials based on alien status under 1996 welfare and immigration reform law. These individuals, who never filed applications, may now be eligible under the alien eligibility provisions of P.L. 105-33, the Balanced Budget Act of 1997, which was enacted on 8/5/97.
Through 3/31/99, SSA will treat the date of these individual's prior inquiries as protective filing dates, regardless of whether or not the prior protective filings were closed out. This is a departure from the usual SSI protective filing closeout instructions that apply to oral inquiries and written statements.
NOTE: For these special instructions to apply, the field office (FO) must have proper documentation that the protective filing occurred. (See SI 00601.030 for documentation requirements.)
These instructions also apply to an individual who is receiving SSI based on an application filed after the prior 60-day protective filing period elapsed (for example, the SSA-L991-U3 was issued in 12/96 and the individual subsequently filed a claim in 5/97). If such an individual comes to your attention, consider whether an earlier filing date can be established based on the instructions in this section.
EXAMPLE: On 2/25/97, an 80-year-old disabled lawfully admitted for permanent residence (LAPR) alien inquired about filing for SSI. The alien could not be credited with 40 qualifying quarters (QQs) of coverage and did not meet the "military/veteran" exception. The claims representative (CR) advised the individual that, under the law then in effect, the individual was not an eligible alien and therefore could not receive SSI. The alien chose not to file a claim. On 2/26/97, the CR issued an SSA-L991-U3 to close out the inquiry.
On 11/24/98, the alien again inquired about SSI eligibility. The alien showed the CR the SSA-L991-U3 he received in 1997 and indicated he now wishes to file for SSI. Based on the date of the prior inquiry, the CR established a protective filing date of 2/25/97.
IMPORTANT: Be alert to situations where an individual never received an informal denial but a deemed filing date can be established based on a determination that the individual was misinformed by SSA about the then current SSI alien eligibility criteria or the right to file an SSI claim (GN 00204.008). (Note, however, that if SSA gave out eligibility information that was correct at the time, that does not constitute "misinformation.")
EXAMPLE OF MISINFORMATION
An alien inquired about filing for SSI. The SSA representative told the individual (incorrectly) that only U.S. citizens can receive SSI. As a result, the individual chose not to file a claim.
Apply the policy in SI 00502.158 to an SSI claim filed by an individual:
Adjudicate the claim to award or denial following current POMS policies and procedures.
Basic SSI Alien Eligibility Requirements, SI 00502.100
Exemption from Alien Provisions for Certain Noncitizen Indians, SI 00502.105
Time Limited Eligibility for Certain Aliens, SI 00502.106
General Alien Development, SI 00502.110
Verification of Alien Eligibility with DHS, SI 00502.115
Qualified Alien Status Based on Battery or Extreme Cruelty By a Family Member, SI 00502.116
Eligibility on the Basis of Receiving SSI Benefits on an Application Filed Before January 1, 1979, SI 00502.120
Documentary Evidence of Qualified Alien Status, SI 00502.130
LAPR with 40 QQs of Earnings, SI 00502.135
Veteran or Active Duty Member of the Armed Forces, a Sp