2012 Memorandums

IM-#81      09/17/12

P.O. BOX 2320


During a recent audit by the Office of Inspector General (OIG) and a Statewide Single Audit, findings indicated Missouri has individuals with blank social security numbers receiving Food Stamp and MO HealthNet benefits. The purpose of this memo is to introduce a new report to help staff reduce the number of individuals without a Social Security Number (SSN) in the Common Area and FAMIS that are receiving benefits.

Effective September 1, 2012 a new report Missing Social Security Number with Good Cause is available to track individuals receiving assistance that do not have a social security number in the FAMIS system and have a good cause (GC) verification code. The report is available monthly through Managed Reporting. Every office must access the report once a month. The report must be distributed to staff, to determine if the individual without a SSN should remain active on assistance.

Another resource that is available for tracking individuals with missing social security numbers is the "Food Stamp and Temporary Assistance Eligibility Units with Missing SSNs for All EU Members" report. This report is emailed to the county email address each month.

If an individual has an SSN, they must provide their SSN to receive benefits. The SSN must be entered in the Common Area through the Social Service Clearing Menu (SCLR) screen when the Department Client Number (DCN) is assigned or through the Social Service Common Client Data Update (SUPD) screen when the individual has a DCN.

NOTE:  If an individual provides a SSN but does not have hard copy verification, enter the number and use the verification code client statement (CS) on the SSN Information (SSNUMBER/FMAS) screen. The quarterly system match with the Social Security Administration will verify the number and change the verification code to system (SY).

Individuals that do not have a SSN must provide verification that they have applied for a number and the correct verification code is entered in FAMIS prior to approving the individual for assistance.

Some individuals may have good cause for not providing verification they have applied for a social security number.  In determining whether good cause exists consider information from the EU member, the Social Security Administration (SSA), and the case information. Documentary evidence or collateral information that the EU member has made every effort to provide the necessary information (such as proof of birth) to complete an application for an SSN is good cause. When necessary provide assistance to the individual in obtaining needed documents.

NOTE: Good cause does NOT include delays due to illness, lack of transportation, or temporary absences for persons able to mail the SSN application. Good cause does include illness and lack of transportation if the person must apply in person.

In order to continue receiving benefits, the EU must show good cause for each month until the SSN is provided or the application is completed. Set a reminder to investigate good cause each month until the SSNs are provided, the application is completed, or until good cause no longer exists.

EXCEPTION:  Newborn children who are automatically MO HealthNet eligible may receive for one year without providing verification of a social security number.  Newborn children on Food Stamps and Temporary Assistance have up to six months to provide a social security number.

Record the good cause decision on the SSN Information (FMAS) screen.

For complete instructions on entering and updating social security number information see the FAMIS User Guide Entering and Updating Social Security Number Information for Eligibility Units.

An important aspect of Food Stamp Payment Accuracy is following federal guidelines for recipients providing a social security number. Making sure each individual receiving Food Stamps has provided a SSN will help ensure we meet our Payment Accuracy goals.



2012 Memorandums