TN 15 (09-01)
SI 02220.030 SSI Overpayment - Compromise Settlement
When an individual offers to repay the Government a lesser amount than the total amount owed if relieved of further responsibility for the remainder of the debt and the Government accepts the offer.
Act on any bonafide offer (see GN 02215.115B. for factors to consider) made by an overpaid individual (or his/her representative) to settle an overpayment.
Instructions for development of compromise settlement offers can be found in Sensitive Instructions SI 02220.031. The chart below lists which employees can accept a compromise settlement for different overpayment amounts.
Employees with Authority to Accept Compromise Settlement
$2,000 or less (no fraud)
Customer Service Representative (CSR), Teleservice Center Customer Service Representative (TSC-CSR), Claims Specialist (CS), or higher
$2,000.01-$5,000 (no fraud)
Operations Supervisor (OS) or Management Support Specialist (MSS). See comment in SI 02220.005B.4.
$5,000.01 - $20,000 and the offer is at least 80 percent of the overpayment balance (no fraud)
OS/MSS or higher
$5000.01 - $20,000 and offer is less than 80 percent of the overpayment balance (no fraud)
Assistant Regional Commissioner and Management Operations Support
$20,000.01 - $100,000
Assistant Regional Commissioner for Management Operations and Systems (ARC, MOS) for referrals from the FOs and the Assistant Regional Commissioner for Processing Center Operations (ARC, PCO) for referrals from the PSCs
More than $100,000
Department of Justice
Fraud cases in any amount
Regional office of the Inspector General
Non Regional office employees in SSA do not have the authority to accept any compromise settlement of overpayments of more than $20,000. They do however have the authority to reject compromise settlement offers of more than $20,000 if it is not considered to be an acceptable offer for consideration by the Assistant Regional Commissioner for Management Operations and Systems (ARC, MOS) or Assistant Regional Commissioner for Processing Center Operations (ARC, PCO). Referrals from the FOs should be referred only to the ARC, MOS and referrals from the PSCs should be referred only to the ARC, PCO.
NOTE: Once the fraud aspects are closed (i.e., there is no longer any potential for prosecution), field office employees have the authority to arrange a compromise offer for overpayments up to $20,000.
Accept a partial refund made prior to approval of the compromise offer.
Provide a receipt that states that acceptance of the refund does not constitute acceptance of the compromise offer.
Explain that there may be a delay in notification of the decision in cases requiring further review.
The reason for a delay is that before a compromise settlement offer can be accepted in some cases (e.g., those of over $20,000 or involving fraud), the offer may be referred to a regional attorney for possible legal objection (if fraud is involved) or referred to the DOJ.
See GN 02215.105B. for factors to consider in a compromise settlement.
2. Format of a compromise settlement
The offer should be:
Representative's signature alone is acceptable only when:
You are reasonably certain he/she is acting for the individual or the individual's estate; and
The representative is in a position to carry out the terms of the settlement; or
There is a SSA-1696-U4 or other proof of appointment in file.
Additional guidelines on format are in GN 02215.105B.3.
3. Development of a compromise
Development is the same for title II and title XVI. See GN 02215.115.
4. FO processing of compromise
Refer any questions of whether to accept a compromise offer to the Assistant Regional Commissioner and Management Operations Support for his/her opinion prior to final acceptance of the offer.
Actions following rejection of a compromise settlement offer.
Notify the individual on a SSA-L8165-U2.
Notify the appropriate ARC.
Resume normal recovery efforts.
See SI 02220.031 Sensitive Instructions for further instructions on procedures for FO processing of compromise offers.
5. When refund is not received as agreed
If refund is not received, consider reporting the overpayment claim to DOJ through ARC MOS, Management and Operations Support (SI 02220.035).
If fraud is not involved, refer to DOJ for consideration of civil suit if the amount of the overpayment is $3,000 or more. See SI 02220.052B.3.c.
However, do not refer death cases if there is no estate.
“Escheted Estate”. An “Escheted estate” is one that has been distributed to the state. See SI 02220.045 for instructions on "Escheted Estates."
6. System considerations
Whenever recovery of an overpayment, regardless of the amount, is discontinued, the uncollected overpayment is maintained on the SSR for reevaluation of adjustment or recovery action when eligibility and payment amount are reestablished. Make appropriate disposition input of the overpayment when eligibility and payment amount are reestablished.
Sequence selection MSOM BUSSR 004.003
Overpayment Menu MSOM BUSSR 004.002
Add/Change/Delete Overpayment Decisions (UODC) MSOM BUSSR 004.007
Overpayment Decisions (UOPD) MSOM BUSSR 004.008
How to resolve B-8 and B-9 diaries: SM 01311.638 - SM 01311.639
Actions following acceptance of a compromise settlement: Sensitive pages SI 02220.031
Compromise Settlement - Y TAC: SM 01311.290