Public Inquiry Correspondence File, Social Security Administration, Regional Offices

Effective Date: January 11, 2006

(71 F.R. 1824)

SOCIAL SECURITY ADMINISTRATION NOTICE OF SYSTEM OF RECORDS REQUIRED BY THE PRIVACY ACT OF 1974

SYSTEM NUMBER: 60-0078

System name:

    Public Inquiry Correspondence File, Social Security Administration, Regional Offices.

Security classification:

    None.

System Location:

    1. Offices of the Regional Commissioners, Social Security Administration (SSA) (see system manager section below for address information).

    2. Social Security field offices (consult local telephone directories for addresses and telephone numbers).

    3. Teleservice centers (contact the system manager at the address below or access http://www.socialsecurity.gov/foia/bluebook/app_e.htm for the addresses of SSA's teleservice centers).

Categories of individuals covered by the system:

    Members of the public who make inquiries to SSA, generally regarding benefit information.

Categories of records in the system:

    Copies of inquires from the public and replies from SSA, generally regarding benefit information.

Authority for maintenance of the system:

    Section 205(a) of the Social Security Act (42 U.S.C. 405).

Purpose(s):

    Information is maintained in this file in case an inquirer requests information or files a formal application for benefits. Consequently, the information can be used as a filing date for benefit purposes.

Routine uses of records maintained in the system, including categories of users and the purposes of such uses:

    Disclosure may be made for routine uses as indicated below. However, disclosure of any information defined as ``return or return information'' under 26 U.S.C. 6103 of the Internal Revenue Code will not be disclosed unless authorized by a statute, the Internal Revenue

Service (IRS), or IRS regulations.

    1. To a congressional office in response to an inquiry from that office made at the request of the subject of a record.

    2. To the Department of the Treasury, Internal Revenue Service, as necessary, for the purpose of auditing the Social Security Administration's compliance with the safeguard provisions of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, as amended.

    3. To Department of Justice (DOJ), a court or other tribunal, or another party before such tribunal when:

    (a) SSA, any component thereof; or

    (b) Any SSA employee in his/her official capacity; or

    (c) Any SSA employee in his/her individual capacity where DOJ (or SSA where it is authorized to do so) has agreed to represent the employee; or

    (d) The United States or any agency thereof where SSA determines that the litigation is likely to affect the operations of SSA or any of its components, is a party to litigation or has an interest in such litigation, and SSA determines that the use of such records by DOJ, a court or other tribunal, or another party before such tribunal, is relevant and necessary to the litigation, provided, however, that in each case, SSA determines that such disclosure is compatible with the purpose for which the records were collected.

    4. To the General Services Administration and the National Archives Records Administration (NARA) under 44 U.S.C. 2904 and 2906, as amended by the NARA Act of 1984, information which is not restricted from disclosure by Federal law for the use of those agencies in conducting records management studies.

    5. To student volunteers, individuals working under a personal services contract, and other workers who technically do not have the status of Federal employees, when they are performing work for the Social Security Administration (SSA), as authorized by law, and they need access to personally identifiable information in SSA records in order to perform their assigned Agency functions.

    6. To Federal, State, and local law enforcement agencies and private security contractors, as appropriate, information necessary:

    (a) To enable them to protect the safety of Social Security Administration (SSA) employees and customers, the security of the SSA workplace and the operation of SSA facilities; or

    (b) To assist investigations or prosecutions with respect to activities that affect such safety and security or activities that disrupts the operation of SSA facilities.

    7. To the Secretary of Health and Human Services or to any State, the Commissioner shall disclose any record or information requested in writing by the Secretary for the purpose of administering any program administered by the Secretary, if records or information of such type were so disclosed under applicable rules, regulations and procedures in effect before the date of enactment of the Social Security Independence and Program Improvements Act of 1994.

    8.  We may disclose information to appropriate Federal, State, and local agencies, entities, and persons when (1) we suspect or confirm that the security or confidentiality of information in this system of records has been compromised; (2) we determine that as a result of the suspected or confirmed compromise there is a risk of harm to economic or property interests, identity theft or fraud, or harm to the security or integrity of this system or other systems or programs of SSA that rely upon the compromised information; and (3) we determine that disclosing the information to such agencies, entities, and persons is necessary to assist in our efforts to respond to the suspected or confirmed compromise and prevent, minimize, or remedy such harm. SSA will use this routine use to respond only to those incidents involving an unintentional release of its records.

Policies and practices for storing, retrieving, accessing, retaining, and disposing of records in the system:

Storage:

    Records generally are maintained in paper form in folders in standard file cabinets. However, records also may be maintained in magnetic media (e.g., disc, microcomputer).

Retrievability:

    By name of inquirer or name of person about whom information is requested.

Safeguards:

    Information in this system is restricted to Agency personnel who need them in the performance of their official duties. Access http://www.socialsecurity.gov/foia/bluebook/app_g.htm for additional information relating to SSA data security measures.

Retention and disposal:

    The records are retained for up to 3 years and then disposed of by shredding.

System manager(s) and address(es):

In the Boston Region ( Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island, Vermont)

          Assistant Regional Commissioner

          Field Operations

          Office of the Regional Commissioner

          Room 1900, John F. Kennedy Federal Building

          Boston, MA 02203-1900

In the New York Region ( New Jersey, New York, Puerto Rico, Virgin Islands)

          Regional Public Affairs Office

          Office of the Regional Commissioner

          Social Security Administration

          Room 40-100, 26 Federal Plaza

          New York, NY 10278

In the Philadelphia Region ( Delaware, District of Columbia, Maryland, Pennsylvania, Virginia, West Virginia)

          Assistant Regional Commissioner

          Programs, Office of the Regional Commissioner

          P.O. Box 8788, Mail Stop 22

          Philadelphia, PA 19101

In the Atlanta Region ( Alabama, North Carolina, South Carolina, Florida, Georgia , Kentucky, Mississippi, Tennessee)

          Regional Commissioner's Inquiry Unit

          Office of the Regional Commissioner

          Social Security Administration

          61 Forsyth Street, NW.

          Atlanta, GA 30303

In the Chicago Region ( Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio, Wisconsin)

          Assistant Regional Commissioner

          Programs Operations and Systems

          Office of the Regional Commissioner

          105 W. Adams Street, 10th Floor

          Chicago, IL 60603

In the Dallas Region ( Arkansas, Louisiana, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Texas)

          Office of the Regional Commissioner

          Social Security Administration

          Room 1440, 1200 Main Tower

          Dallas, TX 75202

In the Kansas City Region ( Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska)

          Assistant Regional Commissioner

          Programs Operations and Systems

          Office of the Regional Commissioner

          Room 436, Federal Office Building

          601 East 12th Street

          Kansas City, MO 64106

In the Denver Region ( Colorado, Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota, Utah, Wyoming)

          Assistant Regional Commissioner

          Management and Budget

          Office of the Regional Commissioner

          Federal Office Building

          1961 Stout Street

          Denver, CO 80294

In the San Francisco Region ( American Samoa, Arizona, California, Guam, Hawaii, Nevada, Northern Marianna Islands):

          Regional Communications Director

          Office of the Regional Commissioner

          P.O. Box 4201

          Richmond, CA 94804

In the Seattle Region ( Alaska, Idaho, Oregon, Washington)

          Assistant Regional Commissioner

          Field Operations

          Office of the Regional Commissioner

          M/S RX-52

          2201 Sixth Avenue

          Seattle, WA 98121

Notification procedures:

    An individual can determine if this system contains a record pertaining to him/her by contacting the most convenient SSA field office (FO) or by writing to the system manager(s) at the above address and providing his/her name, SSN or other information that may be in the system of records that will identify him/her. FO addresses and telephone numbers can be found in local telephone directories under "Social Security Administration,'' or by accessing http://www.ssa.gov/org/.

 An individual requesting notification of records in person should provide the same information, as well as provide an identity document, preferably with a photograph, such as a driver's license or some other means of identification. If an individual does not have any identification documents sufficient to establish his/her identity, the individual must certify in writing that he/she is the person claimed to be and that he/she understands that the knowing and willful request for, or acquisition of, a record pertaining to another individual under false pretenses is a criminal offense.

    If notification is requested by telephone, an individual must verify his/her identity by providing identifying information that parallels information in the record to which notification is being requested. If it is determined that the identifying information provided by telephone is insufficient, the individual will be required to submit a request in writing or in person. If an individual is requesting information by telephone on behalf of another individual, the subject individual must be connected with SSA and the requesting individual in the same phone call. SSA will establish the subject individual's identity (his/her name, SSN, address, date of birth and place of birth, along with one other piece of information, such as mother's maiden name) and ask for his/her consent in providing information to the requesting individual.

    If a request for notification is submitted by mail, an individual must include a notarized statement to SSA to verify his/her identity or must certify in the request that he/she is the person claimed to be and that he/she understands that the knowing and willful request for, or acquisition of, a record pertaining to another individual under false pretenses is a criminal offense. These procedures are in accordance with SSA Regulations (20 CFR 401.40(c)).

Record access procedures:

    Same as Notification procedures. Also, requesters should reasonably specify the record contents being sought. These procedures are in accordance with SSA Regulations (20 CFR 401.40(c)).

Contesting record procedures:

    Same as Notification procedures. Also, requesters should reasonably identify the record, specify the information they are contesting and the corrective action sought, and the reasons for the correction, with supporting justification showing how the record is incomplete, untimely, inaccurate or irrelevant. These procedures are in accordance with SSA Regulations (20 CFR 401.65(a)).

Record source categories:

    Information is furnished by the inquirer and generated by SSA in response to inquiries.

Systems exempted from certain provisions of the Privacy Act:

    None.