The Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) reports the Social Security Administration (SSA) is sending a second round of correction request notices, or “no-match letters,” this fall.
Letters are sent when the SSA discovers the information on a Form W-2 submitted by the employer doesn’t match their database. Employers have 60 days from the date of receipt to submit necessary corrections. Affected employers must register online (pdf) to view the names and Social Security numbers (SSNs) that need correction. Additional steps include:
- Cross-check district records with reported no-match information
- Communicate with affected employees and ask that they confirm the name and SSN reflected in district records
- Ask employees to correct any discrepancies with the SSA
- Remain in contact with employees and document the status of their resolution efforts
- Review any document employees choose to provide demonstrating a resolution
- Submit corrections to the SSA
Avoid adverse employment actions
Taking adverse action against an employee (e.g., suspension or termination) based solely on no-match letters could be considered discrimination under the Immigration and Nationality Act. Because of this, it’s important to proceed impartially as discrepancies may be the result of an unreported name change, a change in marital status, a stolen identity, or clerical error. Proactively informing everyone involved in the process about such pitfalls could prevent a costly and avoidable misstep.
Additional information, including frequently asked questions and instructions for finding and resolving errors, is available on the SSA website.
Keith McLemore is an HR and compensation consultant at TASB HR Services. Send Keith an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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