Filing Date Based on Written Statement

§ 404.630. Use of date of written statement as filing date.

If a written statement, such as a letter, indicating your intent to claim benefits either for yourself or for another person is filed with us under the rules stated in § 404.614, we will use the filing date of the written statement as the filing date of the application, if all of the following requirements are met:

(a) The statement indicates an intent to claim benefits.

(b) The statement is signed by the claimant, the claimant's spouse, or a person described in § 404.612. If the claimant, the claimant's spouse, or a person described in § 404.612 telephones us and advises us of his or her intent to file a claim but cannot file an application before the end of the month, we will prepare and sign a written statement if it is necessary to prevent the loss of benefits. If the claimant, the claimant's spouse, or a person described in § 404.612 contacts us through the Internet by completing and transmitting the Personal Identification Information data on the Internet Social Security Benefit Application to us, we will use the date of the transmission as the filing date if it is necessary to prevent the loss of benefits.

(c) The claimant files an application with us on an application form as described in § 404.611, or one is filed for the claimant by a person described in § 404.612, within 6 months after the date of a notice we will send advising of the need to file an application. We will send the notice to the claimant. However, if it is clear from the information we receive that the claimant is a minor or is mentally incompetent, we will send the notice to the person who submitted the written statement.

(d) The claimant is alive when the application is filed; or if the claimant has died after the written statement was filed, an application is filed—

(1) By or for a person who would be eligible to receive benefits on the deceased's earnings record;

(2) By a person acting for the deceased's estate; or

(3) If the statement was filed with a hospital under § 404.632, by the hospital if—

(i) No person described in paragraph (d) (1) or (2) of this section can be located; or

(ii) A person described in paragraphs (d) (1) or (2) of this section is located but refuses or fails to file the application unless the refusal or failure to file is because it would be harmful to the deceased person or the deceased's estate.

[44 FR 37209, June 26, 1979, as amended at 71 FR 24814, Apr. 27, 2006]