TN 1 (01-05)
SI 00530.030 Why Do We Need a Warrant or Court Order?
NOTE: On April 1, 2009, SSA changed its policy of not paying fleeing felons. Follow the instructions below only for felony warrants with offense codes 4901, 4902, or 4999. Follow the Martinez settlement instructions in GN 02613.860 – GN 02613.885 for all other felony warrant codes.
On May 9, 2011, SSA changed its policy and no longer suspends or denies benefits or payments based solely on a probation or parole violation warrant (i.e., warrants with offense codes 5011, 5012, 8101, 8102, or 9999 or “Blank” and an offense charge symbol of “probation or parole violation”). Follow the Clark Court Order instructions in GN 02615.100 – GN 02615.190 for all probation or parole violation warrants.
We will make additional changes to this section, as necessary, in the future.
The complexities of criminal law that dictate whether or not an individual meets the definition of fugitive felon or parole or probation violator are sometimes unclear and can vary from state to state. For this reason, SSA relies on the expertise of law enforcement agencies and courts for determinations about an individual’s legal status. As long as a United States warrant or court order is active, SSA considers an individual to be a “fugitive felon” for SSI eligibility determination purposes. This is true even if the law enforcement agency is unwilling to extradite, although this unwillingness to extradite may be a factor in SSA’s good cause determination.
In an OIG referral case, the special agent responsible for the case will confirm the warrant information with the appropriate law enforcement agency and supply this information to the FO. An OIG referral case that includes the warrant number and the name, address, and phone number of the warrant issuing agency, is evidence of fugitive status.
If an individual’s status as a fugitive felon is reported to the FO by a local law enforcement agency or another third party, the law enforcement agency responsible for the warrant will confirm that the individual is still being sought. Although the warrant may not specifically state that the individual is a fugitive, SSA still considers the individual to meet the ineligibility criteria of the fugitive felon provisions until the warrant is resolved.
Some terms used by courts and law enforcement agencies to describe actions taken to dispose of a warrant have different meanings in different jurisdictions, e.g., rescinded, recalled, vacated, quashed. We must contact the agency responsible for the warrant to determine the effect on an SSI recipient’s eligibility when we do not know the meaning of a term used to describe the disposition of a warrant. SSI ineligibility applies for all months from the date a valid warrant is issued through the month in which the warrant is satisfied unless good cause is established.