[Federal Register Volume 79, Number 123 (Thursday, June 26, 2014)]
[Rules and Regulations]
[Pages 36203-36204]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2014-14914]


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SOCIAL SECURITY ADMINISTRATION

20 CFR Part 416

[Docket No. SSA-2009-0027]
RIN 0960-AH02


Electronic Substitutions for SSA-538

AGENCY: Social Security Administration.

ACTION: Final rules.

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SUMMARY: This final rule adopts, without change, the final rule with 
request for comments we published in the Federal Register (76 FR 41685) 
on July 15, 2011. We are revising our regulations to reflect our use of 
electronic case processing at the initial and reconsideration levels of 
our administrative review process. We are not changing the requirement 
that State agency medical and psychological consultants must affirm the 
accuracy and completeness of their findings of fact and discussion of 
the supporting evidence, only the manner in which they may provide the 
required findings and affirmation. This revision will improve our 
efficiency by increasing our use of electronic resources.

DATES: These final rules are effective June 26, 2014.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Cheryl Williams, Office of Medical 
Listings Improvement, Social Security Administration, 6401 Security 
Boulevard, Baltimore, Maryland 21235-6401, (410) 965-1020. For 
information on eligibility or filing for benefits, call our national 
toll-free number, 1-800-772-1213, or TTY 1-800-325-0778, or visit our 
Internet site, Social Security Online, at http://www.socialsecurity.gov.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Background

    We are making final the rules for using electronic substitutions 
for the Childhood Disability Evaluation Form (SSA-538) we published as 
a final rule with request for comments in the Federal Register on July 
15, 2011. We previously required adjudicators at the initial and 
reconsideration levels to complete Form SSA-538 in all cases of 
children alleging disability or continuing disability under title XVI 
of the Social Security Act. We now provide a Web-based tool that 
assists our adjudicators in making disability determinations at the 
initial and reconsideration levels. We use the new tool in electronic 
cases but do not use it for cases that we do not process 
electronically. The final rule permits our adjudicators to substitute 
the Web-

[[Page 36204]]

based tool for Form SSA-538. If adjudicators do not use the Web-based 
tool, we still require them to complete Form SSA-538 to explain our 
findings in childhood disability determinations.

Public Comments

    On July 15, 2011, we published a final rule with request for 
comments in the Federal Register at 76 FR 41685 and provided a 60-day 
public comment period. We received one comment. We carefully considered 
the concerns expressed in this comment, but did not make any changes to 
the final rule.
    We have summarized the commenter's view and have responded to the 
significant issue raised by the commenter.
    Comment: The commenter was concerned with the consistency between 
claims that are filed on paper and those filed electronically, and 
suggested that Form SSA-538 be available for electronic claims to 
ensure that all children's claims receive the same considerations.
    Response: We did not adopt this comment. While we believe that 
consistency in adjudication is important, we do not agree that Form 
SSA-538 should be available on the Web-based tool that adjudicators 
currently use in evaluating childhood disability claims. As we noted in 
the preamble to our July 2011 final rule with request for comments (76 
FR 41686), although the Web-based tool does not include an exact copy 
of Form SSA-538, the tool does include all of the major elements of the 
form for explaining our findings in these claims. That is, the 
consultant with overall responsibility must affirm that he or she 
considered the factors and evidence, as we require, in determining 
whether a child's impairment(s) is severe, meets or medically equals a 
listing, or functionally equals the listings.

Regulatory Procedures

Executive Order 12866, as Supplemented by Executive Order 13563

    We consulted with the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) and 
determined that this final rule does not meet the criteria for a 
significant regulatory action under Executive Order 12866, as 
supplemented by Executive Order 13563. Therefore, OMB did not reviewed 
it.

Regulatory Flexibility Act

    We certify that these rules would not have a significant economic 
impact on a substantial number of small entities because they affect 
individuals only. Therefore, a regulatory flexibility analysis is not 
required under the Regulatory Flexibility Act, as amended.

Paperwork Reduction Act

    These rules do not create any new or affect any existing 
collections and, therefore, do not require OMB approval under the 
Paperwork Reduction Act.

(Catalog of Federal Domestic Program No. 96.006, Supplemental 
Security Income)

List of Subjects in 20 CFR Part 416

    Administrative practice and procedure; Aged, Blind, Disability 
benefits; Public assistance programs; Reporting and recordkeeping 
requirements; Supplemental Security Income (SSI).

    Dated: June 19, 2014.
Carolyn W. Colvin,
Acting Commissioner of Social Security.

    Accordingly, the final rule with request for comments amending 20 
CFR chapter III, part 416, subpart I that was published at 76 FR 41685 
on July 15, 2011, is adopted as a final rule without change.

[FR Doc. 2014-14914 Filed 6-25-14; 8:45 am]
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