A claimant who is a child is not ordinarily in a position to pursue their claim independently.
Therefore, we will make special efforts to assist the child in pursuing their claim.
The adult responsible for a child recipient (i.e., parent, guardian, relative, or
other person acting on the child's behalf), is responsible for cooperating in providing
the evidence we need to make a determination. If the adult does not cooperate in providing
requested evidence or actions, we will make reasonable efforts to identify and involve
another adult or agency responsible for the child's care to assist the child.
Reasonable efforts to identify another adult or agency responsible for the child's
care are outlined in DI 25205.020A in this section. See DI 23007.010B for the methods of contact you may use to identify the adult or agency.
If you have identified another adult or agency responsible for the child's care, follow
DI 23007.010C for making reasonable efforts to involve the adult or agency.
1. When to contact another responsible party or agency
If the responsible adult filing is not providing the required information or cooperation,
always attempt to obtain the assistance of another responsible adult or agency.
2. Which responsible party to contact when FTC occurs
a. Appointed representative
See DI 22501.002B.3. for case development responsibilities when there is an appointed representative.
If the appointed representative requested the DDS to communicate directly with the
adult responsible for the child and there is FTC, contact the appointed representative
to request assistance.
b. Designated third party contact in the file
Contact the person or agency designated by the responsible adult or the representative
payee. The designated person or agency is usually identified in:
Section 2 of the SSA-3820-BK
(Disability Report - Child),
Section 2 of the SSA-454-BK (Continuing Disability Review Report), or
Item 11 of the SSA-3881-BK (Questionnaire For Children Claiming SSI
c. Designated third party contact not in file
Review the evidence in file to identify another responsible adult or agency who is
most likely to assist in pursuing the claim. Make a reasonable judgment, based on
the information in file or provided by the responsible adult filing, to determine
if there is another responsible party who can help the child pursue the claim.
Child welfare or other agency has legal custody of the child:
If the responsible adult is not cooperating, contact the agency with legal custody
to request the needed information or assistance. An agency with legal custody is responsible
for providing the information we need, even if the responsible adult filing on behalf
the child is someone else (for example, a foster parent with physical custody).
Information about a legal guardian is in Section 2A of the SSA-3820 or the Case Information
screen on the Case Data tab in eView.
Child resides with the uncooperative responsible adult and another parent, relative,
Consider contacting another adult in the household.
Child resides with someone other than the adult responsible for filing:
Consider contacting the person with whom the child is residing if the responsible
adult filing is not cooperating. For example, the child's mother is the responsible
adult filing, but the child resides with the grandmother. Consider contacting the
grandmother to assist the child in pursuing the claim.
Child regularly cared for in another household:
If the child is frequently in the care of a relative who does not live in the same
household, consider asking that person to assist the child.
If the field office (FO) has not identified a third-party contact, the DDS is only
required to contact an identified legal guardian. Although they must consider contacting
other third parties, they may determine that further contact is not appropriate based
on the facts of the case.
3. Who not to contact for assistance
It is not always appropriate to request assistance from a third party that you identify
in the file. There are often liability issues for third parties, such as teachers
or day care providers. There can also be potential issues involving relationships
among family members. Specifically, DO NOT:
Request assistance from a noncustodial parent unless the responsible adult or representative
payee has named the person;
Request assistance from a third party identified in a prior claim or continuing disability
review (CDR) unless the responsible adult or representative payee has identified the
person in the current action;
Request assistance from a day care provider unless the provider has a familial relationship
with the child or is identified by the responsible adult or representative payee;
Ask school professionals to take the child to a consultative examination or complete
the child function report (forms SSA-3375-BK through SSA-3379-BK).