Independent verification means asking the issuing agency or custodian of the record
to determine whether a document submitted by an applicant is authentic. Independent
verification means the same thing as collateral verification.
When primary evidence of age is required, but the applicant alleges that it is not
available, SSA must contact the BVS in the State where the person was born and ask
if a record of the person’s birth exists. If a record cannot be located, a negative
response (negative verification) is returned, and alternative evidence of age can