TN 28 (01-17)

GN 02401.080 Use of United States Address by Beneficiary Abroad

A. When to use a U.S. mailing address

A beneficiary abroad may use a U.S. mailing address when he or she:

  • has an Army Post Office, Fleet Post Office or Diplomatic Post Office address,

  • has a representative payee in the U.S., or

  • expects to be abroad for 3 months or less.

NOTE: The beneficiary (or their representative payee) must always keep SSA advised of his or her residence address for contact and foreign enforcement purposes.

B. When not to use a U.S. mailing address

A beneficiary may not use a mailing address in the U.S. to receive payment when he or she:

  • travels abroad for more than 3 months;

  • resides in a Treasury restricted country listed in RS 02650.001C; or

  • resides in a barred country listed in RS 02650.040.

NOTE: Do not send checks to relatives or friends in the U.S. for beneficiaries who are abroad more than 3 months except during interim periods while developing a proper mailing address.

C. Receiving benefit payments while having a foreign address

A beneficiary with a foreign address living outside the U.S. may have his or her benefit payment sent to a financial institution (FI) of his or her choice. Title XVI recipients are ineligible to receive benefits while residing outside of the U.S. unless an exception applies. For more information on exceptions, see GN 00303.700A.

1. Checks mailed to an FI

If a beneficiary wants his or her benefit check mailed directly to an FI in the country of residence, the Office of Earnings and International Operations (OEIO) must receive and approve a completed Treasury form SF-233 (Power of Attorney by Individual to a Bank for the Collection of Checks Drawn on the United States).

NOTE: Some countries refuse to negotiate government issued paper checks.

2. Direct deposit with a foreign address

Beneficiaries using International Direct Deposit (IDD) must reside outside the U.S. If a beneficiary wants benefits deposited to a local FI in his or her country of residence, he or she must reside in a country where we have a valid and active IDD agreement. For a list of participating IDD countries, see GN 02402.200. Beneficiaries may reside in one foreign country and have IDD arrangements in another foreign country (e.g., a beneficiary who resides in Belgium but banks in France). The only exception is if the beneficiary resides in a restricted country.


D. References

  • GN 02402.080 Direct Deposit and Mailing Address

  • GN 02402.110 Domestic FIs and Beneficiaries Outside the U.S.

  • GN 02402.115 Power of Attorney to Foreign Financial Institutions (FI)

  • GN 02402.120 Correspondent Banking

  • GN 02605.220 Address Used By a Beneficiary

  • GN 02402.201 Background and Policy for Direct Deposit Outside the U.S.

  • RS 02650.001 Treasury Department Restrictions

  • SM 03005.050 Barred Country Processing

  • VB 00205.215 Residence in a Treasury Barred Country

  • VB 01201.015 Payments to Individuals in Barred and SSA Restricted Countries

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GN 02401.080 - Use of United States Address by Beneficiary Abroad - 01/11/2017
Batch run: 01/19/2024