Identification Number:
EM 22004
Intended Audience:All RCs/ARCs//PSCs
Originating Office:
Title:Implementation of the Remittance ID Query Tool
Type:EM - Emergency Messages
Program:Title II (RSI); Title XVI (SSI)
Link To Reference:
Retention Date: July 25, 2022

A. Purpose
    The purpose of this emergency message (EM) is to provide information regarding implementation of the Remittance ID Query Tool, which will be available to employees in the Mid-Atlantic Program Service Center Remittance Accounting Unit (MATPSC RAU) in January 2022.

    This tool will not change remittance processing instructions for SSA technicians in the Field Office (FO), Teleservice Center (TSC), or Processing Center (PC), other than the MATPSC RAU. Technicians should continue to follow current remittance processes.

    B. Background
      On January 29, 2021, SSA implemented the use of a lockbox to add efficiencies in the agency’s processing of paper programmatic remittances. Lockbox banking is a service provided by the U. S. Department of the Treasury, Bureau of Fiscal Service (Treasury), and their financial agent, US Bank, for the receipt of programmatic payments from customers. Lockbox receives check payments and processes the funds based on a payment coupon received along with the check. Recently, debtors have been sending payments to Lockbox without the corresponding coupon and labeling the payment with a Remittance ID as the only form of identifying information. The Remittance ID is a 10-character, randomized alphanumeric ID that is generated for each RECOOP notice based on the coupon scanline. Lockbox is unable to process payments without a coupon and these items are forwarded to daily via overnight mail to MATPSC for processing. MATPSC technicians are currently unable to process these payments as PCOM (Public Communications) systems do not have capability to look up or translate a Remittance ID to a debt record and subsequently match the repayment to the proper record. Without this ability, MATPSC cannot generate the necessary payment coupon needed to process the remittance and these items are added to the Suspense File.

      Currently, the RAU does not have the ability to look up or translate a remittance ID to a debt record or SSN using PCOM. The Remittance ID Query Tool will provide the RAU with the correct identifying information necessary to process the remittance accurately and timely.

      C. The Remittance ID Query Tool
        The Remittance ID Query Tool will allow MATPSC technicians to input a Remittance ID and receive the debt information needed to] generate a payment coupon. This tool is intended for use by MATPSC Remittance Scan Technicians. The user will enter a Remittance ID into the Remittance ID Query Tool, select search, and the tool will return a read-only screen with the remittance information necessary for MATPSC to generate a payment coupon.

        D. Completing a Remittance ID Search

        From the Landing Page Users will select Remittance ID Query to enter the Remittance ID Query Tool application.

        To complete a Remittance ID search:
          a) Enter a valid Remittance ID into the Remittance ID field and select Search;
          b) A read-only view will display on the Remittance ID Search Results screen that provides remittance information necessary to process a payment coupon.
                i. If an invalid Remittance ID is entered, an error message will display notifying the User that the Remittance ID format is incorrect.
                ii. If a valid Remittance ID is entered but no matching search results are found, an error message will display notifying the User that the Remittance ID entered does not match any information within our system. The User is advised to ensure the information entered is correct and try the search again.

          Direct all program–related and technical questions to your RO support staff or PSC OA staff. RO support staff or PSC OA staff may refer questions or problems to their Central Office contacts.

            EM 22004 - Implementation of the Remittance ID Query Tool - 01/25/2022