SUMMARY: We are amending our regulations on representative payment and on the administrative procedure for imposing penalties for false or misleading statements or withholding of information to reflect and implement certain provisions of the Social Security Protection Act of 2004 (SSPA).
The SSPA amends representative payment policies by providing additional safeguards for Social Security, Special Veterans and Supplemental Security Income beneficiaries served by representative payees.
These changes include additional disqualifying factors for representative payee applicants, additional requirements for nongovernmental fee-for-service payees, authority to redirect delivery of benefit payments when a representative payee fails to provide required accountings, and authority to treat misused benefits as an overpayment to the representative payee.
In addition, we are amending our rules to explain financial requirements for representative payees, and we have made minor clarifying plain language changes.
The SSPA also allows us to impose a penalty on any person who knowingly withholds information that is material for use in determining any right to, or the amount of, monthly benefits under titles II or XVI.
The penalty is nonpayment for a specified number of months of benefits under title II that would otherwise be payable and ineligibility for the same period of time for payments under title XVI (including State supplementary payments).
DATES: These final rules are effective November 17, 2006.
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