Retention Date: May 25, 2024
|Intended Audience:||All RCs/ARCs/ADs/FOs|
|Originating Office:||ORDP ORDES|
|Title:||New Benefits Planning Query (BPQY) Third-Party Enhancements and Reminders|
|Type:||EM - Emergency Messages|
|Program:||Title XVI (SSI); Disability; Records Maintenance (Earnings & Enumeration)|
|Link To Reference:||See References at the end of this EM|
The purpose of this emergency message is to inform SSA staff about a new feature in the web-based Benefits Planning Query (BPQY) application that allows you to quickly address the cover notice to third-party requesters. In addition, we are providing policy guidance on appropriate timeframes to respond to BPQY requests. Lastly, we provided some general reminders.
The BPQY is an important planning tool for a beneficiary/recipient, Benefit counselors, Work Incentives Planning and Assistance (WIPA), Protection and Advocacy (P&A), and Employment Networks under the Ticket to Work, utilized to develop customized services for a disabled beneficiary/recipient who wants to start working or stay on the job.
The BPQY contains comprehensive information about an individual’s disability benefits, work status (including work incentives), scheduled medical reviews, and health insurance. Beneficiaries and appropriate third-party requesters use BPQYs to plan for a successful return to work.
To generate a BPQY statement, you need to access the following link: https://sso.ba.ssa.gov/bpqy. For instructions on how to use the BPQY application, please refer to the BPQY User Guide located on the BPQY website.
NOTE: The old Access BPQY program is no longer fully functional. If you are using a saved desktop icon on your computer, you are potentially using the old Access BPQY program. Please use the internet web-based program for all BPQYs.
C. Beneficiary or Third-party request
A new enhancement for the BPQY program will simplify the process of modifying the address on the cover letter for third party requests. When entering the BPQY program you will select from two radio buttons, Beneficiary, or third-party request. If you select beneficiary, you will follow current procedures of providing the SSN or claim number of the beneficiary and selecting “search”.
If you select the third-party radio button, an Add/Edit 3rd Party Address is prompted on the screen. When selected, this feature navigates to a data entry screen that allows you to store the names and addresses of frequently used third-party agencies. The “Select an Agency” dropdown box will allow you to select the Agency address that you have stored in the BPQY program. Each user will maintain their own list of Agency addresses. After selecting the agency, you will enter the SSN or claim number and hit “search”. The BPQY cover letter will display the address of the third-party.
The Print Options button and the coordinating Print Options sub-menu screen were removed because they were not functional. The Print Options button was replaced with an additional Add/Edit 3rd Party Address button.
D. Policy-Timeframe for responding to BPQY requests
Requests for BPQY reports should be filled within 30 days from the date of the request.
E. BPQY and Overpayment Information
The SSA-3288 release to request a BPQY can be used to ask questions about the data on the BPQY. If the BPQY indicates an overpayment and you have questions specific to the overpayment, you will need to submit a subsequent SSA-3288 with a statement that you want a detailed explanation of the overpayment(s).
F. General Reminders
Benefit Letter versus a BPQY
Although a Benefit Letter is similar to a BPQY, the BPQY provides more detailed information about work incentives under both SSI and SSDI. A Benefits Letter is a statement from SSA that explains the benefits an individual receives and is often used as proof of income and/or proof of disability. The Benefits Letter details such information as the type of benefits an individual receives (SSI, Disability), the individual’s date of birth and monthly benefit amount.
2023 SGA Rates
We have updated the BPQY web-based program to include the 2023 Non-blind SGA and TWP rates and the 2023 Blind SGA rates.
Charge a Fee?
We do not charge a fee for any BPQY requests when the justification for the BPQY is to assist the disability beneficiary/recipient with planning a return-to-work effort or to maintain current employment.
NOTE: The claimant or third-party must state the purpose for disclosing this information. For more information, see GN 03305.003D.6.
For instructions on reading and interpreting a BPQY statement as well as details on the components of a BPQY statement, see our BPQY Handbook located at https://www.ssa.gov/disabilityresearch/documents/BPQY_Handbook.pdf.
Servicing Field Office
BPQY requests are not an exception to the agency’s policy on servicing third-party requests. SSA’s policy provides that third-party requests with the appropriate consent, should be answered by the Field Office that services the zip code of the individual who is the subject of the requested record(s). For more information refer to GN 03305.020.
Direct all program-related and technical questions to your Regional Office (RO) support staff or Program Service Center (PSC) Operations Analysis (OA) staff. RO support staff or PSC OA staff may refer questions, concerns, or problems to their Central Office contacts.
https://sso.ba.ssa.gov/bpqy Authorized access to generate a BPQY statement
GN 03305.003D.6 Consent Documents
https://www.ssa.gov/disabilityresearch/documents/BPQY_Handbook.pdf. Benefits Planning Query Handbook (BPQY) March 2021
GN 03305.020 Servicing Third Party Requesters
EM-23004 - New Benefits Planning Query (BPQY) Third-Party Enhancements and Reminders - 1/19/2023