Social Security Expands Video Services to Tribal and Community Service Locations

For more than ten years, we have offered video services to the public in our local offices and in third-party partner locations nationwide. Using Polycom Video Service Delivery (VSD) units in partner locations, we can remotely serve people who may not have access to our local offices, telephone, or the internet.

In addition to VSD units, people at Tribal and community service locations can now use Microsoft Teams to meet with our staff via video. This option allows the site to use their own equipment to securely connect customers with Social Security.

For more information on video service options or establishing video partner agreements for VSD, contact your local Social Security office.

Update and Clarification: Faxed Applications No Longer Being Accepted

Recently, we notified you that we are no longer accepting faxed applications. We appreciate the feedback we received on the notification and want to provide clarifying information.

As you know, the COVID-19 pandemic disrupted our services and the public’s ability to apply for benefits in person. In response, we implemented various temporary flexibilities – temporary changes to our policies and business processes. These flexibilities included accepting faxed applications as validly signed applications if they contained a legible, handwritten signature. Prior to this change, we did not consider any faxed applications to be validly signed. When we received a faxed application prior to implementing the temporary flexibility, we contacted the claimant to go over the information provided on the application and obtain their signature. We generally contacted the claimant to obtain their signature over the phone as permitted by our alternative signature policy.

With the end of the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency as of May 11, 2023, we evaluated our temporary flexibilities and decided to discontinue accepting faxed applications. Since we have reopened our offices to walk-in traffic and expanded in-person services, we determined that continuing to accept signatures on faxed applications was no longer justified given the risk that bad actors could use faxed applications to commit fraud. However, you can still use a fax to help your clients. Although we will no longer accept faxed, signed applications as valid applications, a claimant can still submit a faxed application to establish a protective filing date. Upon receiving the faxed application, we will contact the claimant or a proper applicant, go over the information provided, and obtain a signature to validate the application. In addition, advocates or representatives can continue to fax the SSI/SSDI Outreach, Access, and Recovery (SOAR) model consent or unsigned application to establish intent to file and establish protective filing dates.

For people who are comfortable using online services, we do offer the online protective filing tool to establish a protective filing and request an appointment. We are also working on implementing a new online, streamlined SSI application by the end of the calendar year.

An Important Notice Regarding Transition-Aged Youth

This week we mailed a notice to more than 323,000 Supplemental Security Income (SSI) recipients between the ages of 14 and 17 (transition-aged youth) and their adult representatives to help them identify policies and other resources to assist youth in their transition to adulthood. These mailings include a notice introducing our annual informational publication, What You Need To Know About Your Supplemental Security Income (SSI) When You Turn 18 (Publication No. 05-11005). We encourage caregivers to review it with the child, if possible.

This publication helps youth prepare for the transition from school to adult life. It provides information about SSI work incentives primarily affecting youth, as well as information about common programs, services, and supports that parents, guardians, and youth may find helpful.

Specific topics covered include:

  • The age-18 redetermination and how to appeal if benefits stop;
  • Earnings and the age 18 redetermination;
  • Available work incentives and supports;
  • SSI program rules about higher education funds;
  • Achieving a Better Life Experience (ABLE) accounts; and
  • Other services that may be helpful.

You can download the publication from the agency's publication website in both English and Spanish.

Also, we have a webpage for youth to assist them with making a successful transition to adulthood.

Faxed Applications No Longer Being Accepted

During the COVID-19 pandemic, we temporarily accepted faxed applications as valid signed applications to expedite the application process. Since the Public Health Emergency ended on May 11, 2023, please note that we are no longer accepting faxed applications as valid.

Applications must meet the following criteria to be considered valid:

  • On an agency-prescribed form;
  • Signed beneath the penalty clause by a proper applicant;
  • Filed with SSA; and
  • The claimant must be alive when the application is filed unless:
    • Before death, there was a written statement of intent to claim benefits.
    • Before death, a Supplemental Security Income (SSI) oral inquiry was received.
    • Within 3 months after the month of death, a title II disability application is filed.

You may find more information on valid applications here.

New - Online Form to Consent to and Authorize SSA to Disclose Certain Privacy Act Protected Records to a Third Party

Your clients can now complete and submit Form SSA-3288-OP1, Disclosure of Records Protected Under the Privacy Act, online. This form allows people over the age of 18 to consent to and authorize SSA to disclose certain types of their Privacy Act protected records to a third party.

We are committed to expanding our online services and making it easier for you and your clients to submit forms and complete other business with us online.

In addition to the new, limited online option, your clients can still submit the completed paper Form SSA-3288 to their local Social Security office to consent to and authorize SSA to disclose their Privacy Act protected records to a third party.

We Have Expanded Our Compassionate Allowances Program

Today, Acting Commissioner Kilolo Kijakazi announced that we have added 12 new Compassionate Allowances conditions.

The Compassionate Allowances program quickly identifies claims where the applicant’s medical condition or disease clearly meets Social Security’s statutory standard for disability. Due to the severe nature of many of these conditions, these claims are often allowed based on medical confirmation of the diagnosis alone.

Please read our press release for details.

Reminder: Supplemental Security Income Reporting Responsibilities

Keeping track of the various changes that affect your clients’ Supplemental Security Income (SSI) can be challenging. We need your assistance reminding your clients of their reporting responsibilities. Informing us of any change in circumstance that may affect their benefits is critical to ensure they receive the right amount each month.

Common changes that need to be reported include changes in:

  • Income;
  • Resources (e.g., bank accounts, vehicles, property);
  • Employment (e.g., starting/stopping a job or change in earnings);
  • Housing (e.g., address or persons moving in or out);
  • Care (e.g., entering or exiting a nursing home);
  • Incarceration status (e.g., entering or exiting a correctional facility);
  • Citizenship (e.g., U.S. citizenship or lawful non-citizen status);
  • Marital status.

How to Report Changes:

  • Call toll free at 1-800-772-1213, weekdays from 8:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. Deaf or hard of hearing clients may call TTY 1-800-325-0778.
  • Contact their local Social Security office.

How to Report Wages:

  • Call our Toll -Free Telephone Wage Reporting System at 866-772-0953.
  • Use the SSA Mobile Wage Reporting app, available as a free download from either the Apple or Google Play stores.
  • Use their personal my Social Security account.
  • Mail or fax to their local Social Security Office.

Before using any of our automated wage reporting applications, or, if they already use one and they change employers, your client or their representative payee must contact us. Please contact their local Social Security office or call us Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m. at 1-800-772-1213 (TTY 1-800-325-0778) to provide the employer’s information and employer identification number (EIN).

They can also sign up for monthly SSI wage reporting email or text reminders.

You can get additional information about wage reporting at SSI Wage Reporting | SSA.

For a complete list of SSI reporting responsibilities, please read our publication, What You Need to Know When You Get Supplemental Security Income.

Have You Heard? States are Restarting Medicaid and Children’s Health Insurance Program Renewals

For the past three years, people on Medicaid or Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP) were not required to renew their coverage due to the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency. This exception was referred to as the ‘continuous enrollment condition’.

The continuous enrollment condition ended, so states have resumed eligibility reviews. To avoid a gap in coverage, people who have Medicaid or CHIP need to take action to renew their coverage.

SSA Celebrates PRIDE Month! Updated Information

In June we recognize the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, Intersex and expanding (LGBTQI+) community. While we acknowledge systemic barriers and the continued work to break them, this year we celebrate the progress made in policies and programs that may help provide efficient and equitable service to those families in the LGBTQI+ community.

We invite you to visit our LGBTQI+ webpage to learn about the benefits available to same-sex couples. We highlight the benefits that surviving same-sex partners and spouses previously excluded from receiving may now be eligible for. Additionally, we have simplified the steps to change the sex marker on a Social Security number record through self-attestation.

Reminder: Best Practices When Filing Exceptions to the Appeals Council

We want to remind you of the following best practices when filing exceptions to the Appeals Council following a final decision by an Administrative Law Judge issued after remand by the district court.

We encourage you to take the steps below to ensure timely processing for your clients:

  • When faxing exceptions, please include “Exceptions to Final Decision” in the subject line to ensure proper identification of your submission.
  • If you are faxing exceptions, please use the fax number corresponding to the appropriate branch:
    Branch Circuit Jurisdiction Branch Fax Number
    CCPRB-1 7th & 9th Circuits (833) 763-0406
    CCPRB-2 1st, 3rd, 4th & 10th Circuits (833) 763-0407
    CCPRB-3 DC, Foreign Claims, 6th & 11th Circuits (833) 763-0408
    CCPRB-4 2nd, 5th & 8th Circuits (833) 775-0562
  • If you requested an extension of time (EOT) to submit exceptions, and you no longer need the extra time, please notify us by faxing the appropriate branch (above) or calling the Claimant and Public Assistance Branch at 703-605-8000 or 1-877-670-2722. If we receive an EOT request separately from exceptions, we will process the EOT which could delay your case unnecessarily.
  • If more than 30 days have elapsed since the submission of exceptions and, using your online access, you do not see the case pending in our system, please contact our Claimant and Public Assistance Branch.

Social Security Launches New Audio Series, SSA Talks, and News Hub

To learn more about Social Security’s top priorities, check out our new audio series, SSA Talks.

In our first episode, Acting Commissioner Kilolo Kijakazi and Janet Walker, Associate Commissioner for Operational HR Services, discuss how our current hiring initiative is central to improving customer service. The 17-minute episode includes a fact sheet and transcript. The fact sheet also provides more info about working at SSA.

Please visit our SSA Talks page to listen and subscribe to receive alerts about future episodes!

Our new Communications Corner provides a central hub for the public, the press, researchers, and other stakeholders looking for information about SSA and our programs.

Visit the Communications Corner to access our blog, newsletter, bulletins, the new audio series, and more!

Social Security Administration Expands Outreach and Access for Supplemental Security Income

Kilolo Kijakazi, Acting Commissioner of Social Security, announced that the agency has expanded its outreach to people in critical need of financial help who may be eligible for Supplemental Security Income (SSI).

Please visit our blog to read more.

Most Popular Baby Names 2022

Today we released last year’s top 10 baby names! This is our annual list of the top baby names based on Social Security number applications from 2022.

To find out which names made this year’s list, visit our baby names page.

Important Update to the Pending Request for Review Process

In 2020, the Appeals Council (Council) successfully implemented a plan to reduce the level of pending requests for review. That level remains at historic lows.

Currently, we do not act on a request for review for an initial 25-day period. In July 2023, we will change that practice and will no longer hold a review for an initial 25-day period. If additional time is needed to submit evidence or argument, please make the corresponding election on the Form HA-520 (Request for Review of Hearing Decision/Order). Letters sent from July 2023 onward will no longer have the statement regarding the 25-day period of inactivity.

All claimants and representatives can still request extensions to submit evidence to the Council, consistent with our regulations and sub-regulations.

Please contact with any questions.

The 2023 Social Security Trustees Report Is Out Now

Today, the Social Security Board of Trustees released its annual report on the long-term financial status of the Old-Age and Survivors Insurance (OASI) and Disability Insurance (DI) Trust Funds.

The combined trust funds are projected to become depleted in 2034, with 80% of benefits payable at that time. The DI Trust Fund is not projected to become depleted during the 75-year projection period.

To learn more, please read our press release.

Internet For All Initiative

Social Security provides a variety of online services that give you and your clients freedom and control when conducting business with us. To address the need for affordable and reliable high-speed internet service, the U.S. Department of Commerce’s National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) launched the Internet for All Initiative. As part of this initiative, NTIA established the Broadband Equity, Access, and Deployment (BEAD) Program and the Digital Equity Act Program. These programs will fund projects that will:

  • Connect unserved and underserved populations to high-speed internet.
  • Provide devices and digital skills training.
  • Make the internet more affordable.
  • Create jobs.

To discuss potential projects and make sure your community’s voice is heard during the planning process, contact your State Broadband Office. For more information, visit the Internet for All webpage or the Broadband Guidebook created by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.

The Tax Deadline is Approaching

The end of tax season is fast approaching. This year the tax return filing deadline, or Tax Day, falls on April 18, 2023.

If your client receives Social Security benefits, they should have received an annual Benefit Statement, also known as the SSA-1099 or the SSA-1042S. A Benefit Statement shows the total amount of benefits an individual received from Social Security in the previous year, so they know how much Social Security income to report to the IRS on their tax return. If your client misplaced their Benefit Statement, they can instantly get a replacement form with a personal my Social Security account.

Visit our Information for Tax Preparers webpage to learn more.

FY 2024 President’s Budget for SSA

Today, the Biden-Harris Administration released the President’s Budget for Fiscal Year 2024 for the Social Security Administration.

Please visit our blog to read a statement from Acting Commissioner Kijakazi.

An Important Reminder Regarding Submission of Form SSA-827

When completing the Authorization to Disclose Information to the Social Security Administration (Form SSA-827), please remember to obtain a proper signature from your client.

Social Security requires a signed Form SSA-827 from the claimant or proper applicant at each adjudicative level to process disability claims, continuing disability reviews, and non-disability claims when capability is an issue.

Representatives periodically provide SSA-827 forms in the Electronic Folder that have altered claimant signatures and/or dates, such as displaying a picture of a signature or date that is not original. Altering the SSA-827 form in this way violates our policy and puts medical providers at significant risk of releasing sensitive medical information without the proper authorization required by law. Forms altered with annotations are invalid and cause case processing delays.

If you are amending SSA-827 forms in this manner, we ask that you discontinue this practice immediately. You are required to obtain a new, properly signed, and dated Form SSA-827 at each adjudicative level.

You may submit questions to

Slam the Scam

The Inspector General for the Social Security Administration (SSA) has designated March 9, 2023, as National “Slam the Scam” Day – an outreach campaign to raise public awareness of Social Security scams and other government imposter scams. This is part of National Consumer Protection Week, March 5 - 11, 2023.

In 2022, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) received over 191,000 complaints of government imposter scams. Of those, 14.6% said they lost money to a scammer – a total of $508.96 million. To prevent further losses, we urge everyone to use caution when receiving calls or messages from someone claiming to be from a government agency.

Recognizing the basic signs of a scam is helpful in stopping fraudulent activity. Remember:

  • Scammers pretend to be from an agency or organization you know to gain your trust.
  • Scammers say there is a problem or a prize.
  • Scammers pressure you to act immediately.
  • Scammers tell you to pay in a specific way.

Social Security will never:

  • Threaten arrest or legal action if someone does not immediately send money to resolve an overpayment.
  • Promise to increase benefits or resolve identity theft issues for a fee or by moving money into a protected account.
  • Require payment with a retail gift card, prepaid debit card, cryptocurrency, wire transfer, internet currency, or by mailing cash.
  • Send text, email, or social media messages that contain personal information.

Visit our Scam Awareness and Social Media Resources webpages for additional resources and information on how to report Social Security Scams.

New Redesigned Website Prioritizes Customer Experience

In our ongoing commitment to provide efficient and equitable service, visitors to will now experience a new design that helps them find what they need more easily and do business with us online. Many of our most visited sections now use a more user-friendly and task-based approach. In the coming months we will continue to unveil new pages and improvements based on public feedback.

Read our blog announcing the redesigned website and several interactive tools, such as our new benefit eligibility screener.

We Want Your Feedback - Improving Communications with Organizational Representative Payees

Your feedback is valuable and important to us.

We are seeking ideas and feedback on ways to improve communications between organizational representative payees and our local offices, using an online tool called Engage SSA.

Engage SSA will be available through Friday, November 18, 2022. Please see the Engage SSA guide for details on using the site.

Update on Increase to the Attorney Fee Cap

We previously announced an upcoming increase to the maximum fee under the fee agreement process, the first increase in 13 years. Effective November 30, 2022, the maximum fee will change from $6,000 to $7,200.

Additionally, on November 30, 2022, we are also increasing the fee petition amount that an initial authorizer may approve if an appointed representative seeks authorization of a fee through the fee petition process. During the fee petition process, the initial authorizer may now approve up to $12,000 in connection with a claim adjudicated at the initial, reconsideration, or hearing level.

Information for appointed representatives, including the electronic SSA-1696 fee agreement, is available on our Representing Social Security Claimants page.

Recent Policy Changes Made for Self-Attestation of Sex Marker

We modified our policies to permit individuals to make changes in the sex designation field of their records without the need for evidence or documentation. This policy change aligns with the agency’s commitment to decrease administrative burdens and ensure people who identify as gender diverse, or transgender, have options in the Social Security Number card application process.

Visit our blog to learn more.

Social Security Benefits Increase in 2023

In 2023, monthly Social Security benefits and Supplemental Security Income payments for approximately 70 million Americans will increase by 8.7%.

Visit our blog for more details about the COLA increase.

An Update To Our Compassionate Allowance Initiative

We have added 12 new conditions to our Compassionate Allowances initiative.

A Compassionate Allowances condition clearly meets our standard for disability under the law. When a Social Security or Supplemental Security Income claim involves a Compassionate Allowances condition, we can often make a decision quickly and minimize the time required to begin paying benefits.

Please see our press release for details.