Identification Number:
EM-21072
Intended Audience:RCs/ARCs/ADs/FOs/PSCs/OCO
Originating Office:OPSOS DAPS
Title:Processing Conserved Funds Remittances Using the Social Security Electronic Remittance System (SERS)
Type:EM - Emergency Messages
Program:All Programs
Link To Reference:See References at the end of this EM
 
Retention Date: June 17, 2022

A. Purpose
This emergency message is to announce the release of a Social Security Electronic Remittance System (SERS) enhancement that will allow technicians to process conserved funds remittances that do not have an associated debt posted to the record, eliminating the need to mail the remittances to the Wilkes-Barre Direct Operations Center (WBDOC) or Mid-Atlantic Program Service Center (MATPSC) for processing. This enhancement will be available December 19, 2021.

B. Background
Prior to December 19, 2021, SERS only accepted remittances for conserved funds when there was an associated debt on the Master Beneficiary Record (MBR), Recovery of Overpayments, Accounting and Reporting (ROAR) or Supplemental Security Record (SSR). With this enhancement, a new Conserved Funds store option will be available on the SERS Site Selector screen, allowing authorized technicians to process remittances in SERS without a debt being present on the record.

The Conserved Funds store will accept payments from an:
    · Individual for an individual beneficiary or recipient;
    · Organization for an individual beneficiary or recipient;
    · Individual for multiple beneficiaries or recipients using the same remittance;
    · Organization for multiple beneficiaries or recipients using the same remittance.
    The Conserved Funds store will not accept:
      · Checks or money orders drawn on foreign banks;
      · Checks or money orders submitted for multiple purposes (i.e., to pay a conserved funds amount and to repay an overpayment or Medicare premium).
    C. Instructions
    To ensure the payment is credited accurately, when a conserved funds remittance is received from a former representative payee, technicians must ensure that a conserved funds debt is not present on SSA records before processing the remittance through the Conserved Funds store.

    Technicians will take the following actions in SERS:
      1. Initiate a remittance in SERS through the Programmatic Remittances store to check for available conserved funds debts. On the Programmatic Debts Catalog screen, the user will see a list of available debts. Conserved Funds debts are designated with the “C” code in the Reason column.
          a. If a conserved funds debt is found, continue to process the remittance through the Programmatic Remittances store.
          b. If no conserved funds debts are found, cancel the transaction, and go to step 2.
      2. Initiate a transaction through the Conserved Funds store from the SERS Site Selection screen. The procedure for processing the remittance in the Conserved Funds store closely mirrors the process for using the Programmatic Remittances store in SERS. Refer to the Conserved Funds User Guide on the SERS website for step-by-step instructions.
      Technicians will process only conserved funds remittances through the Conserved Funds store. Any remittances submitted for a purpose other than conserved funds should be processed through current business processes.

      NOTE: Do not mail any conserved funds remittances processed through SERS to MATPSC or the WBDOC. This will create a duplicate transaction which could result in the remitter having a duplicate charge. Once processed through SERS, store the remittance in a secure location for five days and then shred it. See GN 02403.161 for more information.

      The PCs will receive conserved funds remittance exceptions from the SERS conserved funds transaction and should process these remittance exceptions following established business processes. For greater accuracy, PC technicians are encouraged to use the ROAR Remittance BOT to process remittance exceptions whenever possible.

      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 of PSC OA staff may refer questions or problems to their Central Office contacts.

      References
      GN 02403.161 Social Security Electronic Remittance System (SERS) for Programmatic Debts
      GN 02403.003 The Field Office Remittance Input
      SM 00610.299 Correcting the Remittance Exception
      SM 00848.320 Coding “CF” (Conserved Funds) Special Entry
      EM-21072 - Processing Conserved Funds Remittances Using the Social Security Electronic Remittance System (SERS) - 12/17/2021