I-1-2-48.Administrative Review of the Amount of the Fee Under the Fee Agreement — Determination Notice Procedures

Last Update: 4/12/21 (Transmittal I-1-101)

A. Prepare the Determination Notice

After following the procedures in Hearings, Appeals and Litigation Law (HALLEX) manual I-1-2-46 and I-1-2-47, issue the notice of the fee amount determined after administrative review. Refer to HALLEX I-1-2-111 for sample language.

The notice of the administrative review determination will include:

  1. Authority for administrative review under the Social Security Act: section 206(a)(3) for title II cases, and sections 206(a)(3) and 1631(d)(2) for title XVI-only and concurrent cases.

  2. Discussion of the issue(s) raised.

  3. A statement as to whether the fee amount was affirmed or modified and the reasons.

  4. The amount of the fee authorized after administrative review.

  5. Instructions concerning any adjustment of the fee amount. If the fee is adjusted and:

    • If the eligible representative already received direct payment, include language that the effectuating component (processing center or field office) will inform the claimant and the representative of the amount due to the representative, or the amount the representative must refund to the Social Security Administration (SSA), and the amount SSA will refund to the claimant.


      The decision maker does not calculate the outstanding amounts. The effectuating component will compute these amounts, taking into consideration any adjustments to the amount of the claimant's past-due benefits, the initially authorized fee, the initial user fee, the fee authorized after administrative review, and the user fee based on the authorized fee after administrative review.

    • If the representative is not eligible for direct payment or waived direct payment, include language regarding the balance due to the representative or the amount the representative must refund the claimant, if the claimant has already paid the representative the fee amount initially authorized.


      If the fee is increased and the representative is an eligible representative who received the previously authorized fee from withheld benefits, do NOT advise the representative that SSA will make the additional payment without first determining that the effectuating component is continuing to withhold the claimant(s)'s past-due benefits.

  6. A statement that the determination is not subject to further review.

  7. A statement that copies of the determination notice will be sent to the parties.

B. Distribute the Determination Notice

  • Send copies of the determination notice to the claimant, affected auxiliary beneficiary(ies) (except those who reside with the claimant), and the representative at their last known addresses. The reviewing official must also mail a copy of the notice to the decision maker when the decision maker requested review or commented on the review.

    (See HALLEX I-1-2-46 C.1. for Privacy Act considerations.)

  • Add a copy of the determination notice to the claim(s) file.

  • Send the determination notice to the component(s) that effectuated the favorable decision.


If the decision maker requested review, the reviewing official must prepare a separate letter to the claimant, with a copy to the representative, and attach this letter to the determination notice. The reviewing official will include in the letter to the claimant language about any amount due to or from the representative. See HALLEX I-1-2-111 F.2. for sample language.

C. Systems Input

Update the case tracking system to reflect the administrative review determination.