PROGRAM OPERATIONS MANUAL SYSTEMPart GN – GeneralChapter 024 – ChecksSubchapter 03 – Procedures for Handling Remittances and Premium Payments in the Field OfficeTransmittal No. 40, 01/22/2021
On January 29, 2021, SSA implemented the use of a lockbox to add efficiencies in the agency’s processing of programmatic remittances. Lockbox banking is a service provided by the U. S. Department of the Treasury, Fiscal Service (Treasury), and their financial agent, US Bank, for the receipt of payment from customers. The customer sends remittances to a designated US Bank P.O. Box, US Bank processes the payments for the agency, and deposits the funds directly into the Federal Reserve Bank.
Summary of Changes
GN 02403.163 Processing Programmatic Remittances through the Lockbox
Lockbox banking is a service provided through the US Bank financial institution for the receipt of payment from customers. Remittances are sent to a designated P.O. Box, US Bank processes the payments, and deposits the funds directly into the Federal Reserve Bank.
MATPSC will no longer process remittances from RECOOP bills (green mail.)
This new section notifies MATPSC and Debt management users of the new Lockbox procedures.
In early 2021, the Recovery and Collection of Overpayment Process (RECOOP) notices were changed to notify debtors to send their remittances to:
The lockbox service processes single checks with a single coupon and single checks with multiple coupons. These coupons are generated from RECOOP billing notices, commonly referred to as “green mail” The lockbox uses high-speed image scanning equipment to read and verify remittance data from the coupon. The machine-readable remittance coupon uses optical character recognition (OCR) technology. Remittance data is captured and transmitted to the agency daily.
US Bank will image the front and back of processed checks, and image the front and back of any associated remittance documents. It will transmit the images to the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland (FRB Cleveland) where the images will be made available to the agency for viewing and download individual checks via Electronic Check Processing (ECP). The ECP is a web-based, client facing application lockbox network or a mobile application. ECP is used by Federal government agencies and their financial agents to view and research transactions.
SSA will also use the Collection Information Repository (CIR), which is a data archive and reporting tool that provides a single solution to view and/or download information for settled transactions processed by the Treasury's portfolio of revenue collection systems.
Any items that US Bank cannot process will be forwarded daily, via overnight mail, to MATPSC. This includes the following items:
Payments without a coupon
Unbalanced single check/multi-coupon payments
Credit card payments
Foreign coin or foreign items
Unreadable or damaged items
The above items will be sent to the below address:
Once received, MATPSC will follow current procedures located in GN
02403.000 to process remittances.
US Bank will include an Individual Reference Number (IRN) in the daily file for all remittances processed by the lockbox. This will assist us to process check returns, and check adjustments, etc. An IRN is a unique number generated by US Bank sent to Treasury’s CIR. As a result, the IRN ‘LCK########’ will appear in the 'Receipt Number’ field on the daily detail file and in the Receipt Number field of the REQD screen in DMS. The number #will be the last 8 digits of the IRN.
GN 02403.000 Procedures for Handling Remittances and Premium Payments in the Field Office