TN 37 (11-18)
When a debtor alleges that he or she submitted a payment for a debt and our records
do not reflect this payment(s), find out:
1. The type of payment:
Treasury Offset Program (TOP),
Returned benefit check (ask if check was endorsed),
Refund via personal check, or
Money order; and
2. When and where the remitter made the payment.
NOTE: Regardless of the method of the alleged payment, if we selected or referred the debtor
to TOP, explain that the balance of the debt is subject to offsets until we have fully
collected it (see GN
02201.029 for an explanation of TOP). Negotiate repayment of any balance.
If an unendorsed benefit check is returned:
Suspend billing where necessary until the allegation is resolved, and
Refer to the Debt Specialist (DS) for resolution.
For credit card payments, contact the Mid-Atlantic Program Service Center's (MATPSC)
Remittance and Accounting Unit (RAU) by creating a Paperless ACR, verify proof of
payment if it cannot be located or if it is a recurring payment.
Follow the procedure below for a check, money order, or endorsed benefit check.
If the debtor refunded the overpayment within the last 10 days, diary for 5 days with
instructions to call the debtor if there is still no record of the payment.
If the debtor refunded the overpayment more than 10 days ago:
Refer to the Remittance Cash Clerk to check the suspense file by both account number
and debtor name. If the remitter visited the Field Office to submit a remittance,
it is possible that the payment was processed through the Social Security Electronic
Remittance System (SERS). The remittance cash clerk will need to verify in SERS if
the transaction was completed correctly (see GN
If the payment is not in the file, forward allegation to MATPSC in Paperless.
For a TOP payment, obtain a Collection Query, which displays information about the
status of TOP and credit bureau reporting (see MSOM DMS
If any balance remains, negotiate payment and explain that the offset only reduced
the debt owed.
If the Collection Query shows no offset, refer to the DS for resolution.