TN 56 (08-23)

GN 01070.830 OEIO DEBS Direct Telephone Contact—Making the Call

Apply the following telephone techniques when making the telephone call:

Step Action


  • If you get the person, STOP. Go to step 2.

  • If you get a busy signal, try again. Do not consider the call an unsuccessful telephone attempt.

  • If you get an answering machine, hang up, and count the call as an unsuccessful telephone attempt. If a.m., place second call in p.m. and vice versa.

  • After second unsuccessful attempt, the Benefit Earnings Technician (BET) will use the appropriate form letters to write directly to the employer or individual involved (see GN 01070.835 for list of notices). The BET should also prepare and send Address Information Request (E-Form SSA-L2001) to verify the individual’s address with the post office.


    The case will remain the development holding file (DHF) pending a response.


Identify yourself by name and state that you are calling from the Social Security Administration (SSA), Division of Earnings and Business Services (DEBS) in Baltimore, Maryland.



  • Make it clear that you are not calling from the SSA field office. Go to Step 3.

  • Should you reach someone with a language barrier, or does not understand your request, advise the individual in English that the Social Security Administration will be sending a letter addressed to their name _______. Thank them for listening and end the conversation in a tactful and professional manner.


Explain the reason for the call. If the individual you are calling is not available, ask when you may call back.


Do not disclose any personal information about the client to the individual answering the telephone, because of Privacy Act considerations.


When telephone contact is established with the appropriate wage earner, obtain as much information as possible during the initial conversation:

  • All the Social Security Number (SSN) and names the individual has used for employment purposes and/or the numbers and names on all SSN cards the individual may have used.

  • All the correct identifying information for each wage earner so SSA can determine to whom the number(s) belong.

  • All the years and employers for whom the individual may have worked that pertain to the case.

  • Inform the individual that SSA will be sending them a letter. A form SS-5 and itemized employment statement to be completed and returned within 30 days.

  • Advise the individual that without their cooperation, SSA may not be able to correct their records.

  • Thank the individual for their assistance and should additional telephone contact be necessary, ask them the best time to contact them and at what telephone number.


Arrange for a call back if necessary.


DEBS personnel will initiate a call back to the individual if information or data is not available during the initial call.


When telephone contact is established with an employer and they are unable or unwilling to cooperate over the phone:

  • Tell the employer that we will send them a letter instead (see GN 01070.835 for list of notices).

  • Thank them for their time and end the conversation in a tactful and professional manner.


Ask the individual to:

  • Assure their SSN is on the needed document(s)

  • Mail the document to:

    Social Security Administration
    6100 Wabash Avenue
    Baltimore MD 21215
    Attn: Name___DEBS___MOD___
  • Mark the front of the envelope: TO BE OPENED BY ADDRESSEE ONLY


Express gratitude and end call.


Document the call using one of the following screens as necessary to record the development taken to resolve the earnings issue and to retain information such as address(es), telephone number(s), report of contacts, etc.:

  • Earnings Development Worksheet (EDWR) screen, MS 01517.004

  • Worksheet Remarks (ERMK) screen, MS 01517.005

  • Report of Contact (EROC) screen - MS 01517.006

  • Employer Development (EEMP) screen, MS 01517.007

  • Self Employment (SE) Business Development (ESEM) screen, MS 01517.008

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GN 01070.830 - OEIO DEBS Direct Telephone Contact—Making the Call - 08/15/2023
Batch run: 08/15/2023