Overpayments: Benefit Integrity and Recovery FAQ’s

How do I contact the Benefit Integrity and Recovery and what does the section do?
You can e-mail Benefit Integrity and Recovery (BIR) at overpayments@okdhs.org or call at 405-522-0933. BIR is responsible for establishing claims and recovering over-issuances for Adult and Family Services (AFS) programs. BIR is charged with ensuring overpayment claims are written according to program policy, state statutes, and federal laws.
Why should I write an overpayment when I’m so busy with other tasks?
We understand how busy you are helping DHS clients become self-sufficient, but establishing overpayment claims helps protect the integrity of AFS programs. DHS must ensure that state and federal funds are handled accurately and benefits are going to those who are eligible for assistance; overlooking or ignoring over-issuances compromises this trust, depletes our resources, and degrades our programs. These claims help minimize waste and operate AFS programs at the least amount of expense to taxpayers so it is important that we minimize abuses of the programs and correct mistakes as quickly as possible.
Who is responsible for preparing the overpayment claim?
There has been some confusion about who is responsible for calculating and submitting overpayments. Whoever has the case when the overpayment is discovered is responsible for completing and submitting the claim referral, whether it is a support center or county office employee.
Where do I send overpayment claim referrals?
You can email them to overpayments@okdhs.org, fax them to 405-522-0952 or send them through interagency mail to: Sequoyah Building, AFS/Benefit Integrity and Recovery.
Where should clients send payments for their overpayments?
Payments can be made by personal check, cashier’s check or money order to:
DHS, P.O. Box 248893, Oklahoma City, OK 73124-9914. Please advise clients to not send cash through the mail and be sure to include their account number, case number, social security number or other identifying information to ensure proper credit. You can also have them contact BIR directly and we will provide them with this information.
Can clients make payment arrangements?
Many individuals are on fixed incomes or have incomes close to the poverty level. We want to do all we can to help and are willing to set up minimum monthly repayment plans for most debts. Please advise them to do one of the following to make arrangements.

  • Return the repayment agreement in the postage paid envelope included with the overpayment notification letter.
  • Contact Benefit Integrity and Recovery by telephone at 405-522-0933 or 1-800-427-8541.
  • Email Benefit Integrity and Recovery at overpayments@okdhs.org
  • Write a letter to send at: P.O. Box 25352, Oklahoma City, OK 73125
My client does not want to have her/ his benefits reduced in order to repay the overpayment. Does she/he have a choice?
No. For SNAP claims, 10% or $10, whichever is greater, of the benefit amount will be recouped for agency and inadvertent household errors and 20% or $20, whichever is greater, will be recouped if the debt is classified as fraud / Intentional Program Violation. For TANF, TANF related programs and ABD, 10% of the monthly benefit will be recouped. Child Care debts are recouped from TANF benefits at a rate of 10% of benefit amount. In addition to these mandatory recoupment percentages, an individual can request a higher recoupment amount by contacting BIR at 405-522-0933.
My client says she / he didn’t use any of the benefits they received and asked if they could repay their overpayment by allowing DHS to remove the extra benefits. Is this possible?
If the client was overpaid for TANF or ABD, the answer is no; we are no longer able to remove cash benefits for repayment of overpayment debts. Please advise the individual that they can remove the cash themselves and use it to repay their debt. If it is a SNAP overpayment, please have the individual sign a statement requesting / authorizing DHS to remove the benefit from their Oklahoma Access account. The signed statement, along with the 08OP005E / FSP-10 form (if not already submitted) for SNAP over-issuance, should be faxed to the Benefit Integrity and Recovery Section at 405-522-0952 or sent through interagency mail.
Do you have an example of a statement we can use when a client wants their benefits removed to repay an overpayment?
You can use form 08OP118E / FSP-18-B, Food Benefit Repayment Agreement or something as simple as a written or typed statement with the person’s name, date, signature, case number / account number, amount to be removed and statement that DHS is authorized to remove the over-issued amount from the EBT account. Make sure the exact amount is written on the statement.
My client called and told me that DHS is trying to collect a debt from 20 years ago. Is this true?
Yes. The State of Oklahoma has a Constitutional prohibition on forgiveness of debt to the State. Advise them to contact BIR and we can give them information about the overpayment.
How do I answer questions about overpayments due to agency error?
Even if the claim is the fault of DHS, the client is responsible for repayment because they received and utilized benefits to which they were not entitled. Advise them to contact BIR for any questions they might have.
Is there ever a situation where I don’t need to write an overpayment even if an individual received more benefits than they were entitled to receive?
Yes. SNAP is the only program where if certain conditions exist, you would not need to complete an overpayment referral. If all three of these conditions are met, you do not need to write an overpayment:

  • The overpayment amount is less than $250;
  • Client is not currently receiving benefits when you discover the overpayment;
  • The overpayment is not a result of a QC audit
What is the Treasury Offset Program (TOP)?
This is a federal, centralized offset program to collect delinquent debts owed to federal agencies and states. According to federal regulations, all SNAP overpayment claims must be sent to TOP for collection once they become delinquent for more than 180 days. Certain federal payments can be intercepted in order to repay the debt including income tax refunds, social security, federal salary pay, federal retirement, and other federal payments. SNAP debits remain in TOP until they are paid in full unless an acceptable repayment agreement is set up, the person files bankruptcy or is deceased.
Can a client do anything to prevent their federal tax return or social security from being intercepted by TOP?
The best way to avoid referral to TOP is to pay the debt in full or make a written repayment agreement and make payments each month for the agreed amount and by agreed upon due date.
Our county has some overpayment case records that say ‘DO NOT DESTROY’ on the folder and we had planned on sending these history files for destruction because they are so old. Can we do that?
Federal Regulations require State agencies retain overpayment records for three years after the debt has been paid in full, or for three years following a decision that no further action will be taken to collect the debt, such as in the event of death or discharged bankruptcy. To ensure these case records are not destroyed, there is a federal requirement to mark them with the words ‘DO NOT DESTROY’. If a county case record(s) is otherwise eligible for destruction and marked ‘DO NOT DESTROY’ because of an overpayment, please provide a list of the case(s) to BIR and we will advise whether or not the record(s) must be retained. If we indicate the case records can be destroyed, please mark through the words “DO NOT DESTROY’ or remove them from the folder and follow the regular procedure for deletion and destruction of records. If BIR instructs the county they are NOT eligible for destruction, please scan them into imaging. Prior to imaging, these old overpayment records would have been sent to central files for retention but that procedure is no longer necessary.
I was told by an OIG agent that an individual is disqualified from the SNAP program. Should I remove them from the benefit?
No. Once OIG completes the fraud investigation, a report is sent to us and Benefit Integrity and Recovery staff are responsible for removing the individual from the case or closing the case, sending out the disqualification/penalty notice and updating the disqualification screen in IMS (FSD – space – SSN). If you have questions about a specific situation, please contact us by e-mail or telephone.
A neighbor reported an individual has been working full-time. Do I send an overpayment referral to both BIR and OIG?
No. This can result in duplication of work and administrative costs. If you make an OIG referral, a second referral should not be submitted to BIR. If you send an overpayment claim referral to BIR, there is no need to send one to OIG. BIR works closely with OIG and send all inadvertent household error claims that are $1500 or more for investigation. Likewise, if OIG is investigating a fraud situation, they send an overpayment referral to BIR for calculation. There are many instances where both OIG and BIR are sent referrals on the same person(s) for the same reason(s). It is important for county staff to understand if they make a referral to OIG, a second referral should NOT be submitted to BIR. Likewise, if an overpayment claim referral is sent to BIR, there is no need to send one to OIG.
I accidently entered the wrong income in FACS and want to avoid an overpayment. How do I get that benefit off this case?
If a benefit appears on the BN to which the client is not eligible AND the S/I (status indicator) field is marked ‘P’ (paid), then an overpayment exists and must be handled according to program policy. If the S/I field is marked ‘T’ (to be issued) contact the Help Desk Section immediately to have the benefit backed off the system.
I accidently put incorrect information (elderly/disabled indicator, income, expenses, etc.) in FACS when I certified the SNAP section. The benefits are now frozen because it is a benefit reporter. What do I do?
Please refer to the following Quest article SNAP: Oops! I Made a Mistake. Once you have completed the process and the helpdesk has pushed the corrections through, you will need to send an overpayment referral to BIR for the months in which incorrect benefits were issued. It is important to do this or the agency error overpayment will continue until the benefit review month.

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