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entitled 'Benefit System Requirements: Checklist for Reviewing Systems 
under the Federal Financial Management Improvement Act' which was 
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United States General Accounting Office:

October 2003:

GAO:

Benefit System Requirements:

Checklist for Reviewing Systems under the Federal Financial Management 
Improvement Act:

GAO-04-22G:

PREFACE:

October 2003:

The Federal Financial Management Improvement Act of 1996 (FFMIA) 
requires, among other things, that agencies implement and maintain 
financial management systems that substantially comply with federal 
financial management system requirements. These requirements are 
detailed in the Federal Financial Management System Requirements series 
issued by the Joint Financial Management Improvement Program (JFMIP) 
and in the guidance issued by the Office of Management and Budget 
(OMB): Circular A-127, Financial Management Systems, and the January 4, 
2001, Revised Implementation Guidance for the Federal Financial 
Management Improvement Act (FFMIA) of 1996. JFMIP intends for the 
requirements to promote understanding of key financial management 
systems concepts and requirements, to provide a framework for 
establishing integrated financial management systems to support program 
and financial managers, and to describe specific requirements of 
financial management systems.

We are issuing this checklist, which reflects JFMIP's Benefit System 
Requirements (JFMIP-SR-01-01, September 2001), to assist (1) agencies 
in implementing and monitoring their benefit systems and (2) managers 
and auditors in reviewing their benefit systems to determine if they 
substantially comply with FFMIA. Among the types of benefit programs 
covered by these systems would be those for retirement, disability, 
death, survivor, and others not related to health care.

There is no requirement that this checklist be used in assessing 
benefit systems. Rather, it is provided as a tool for use by 
experienced staff and is one in a series of documents we have issued to 
assist agencies in improving or maintaining effective operations. (See 
the last page of this document for a list of related products.) This 
checklist, the JFMIP source document, and the two previously mentioned 
OMB documents should be used concurrently. Those using this tool must 
apply experienced judgment in its interpretation and application. They 
must consider the impact of the completed checklist on an entire 
benefit system and whether the system, as a whole, substantially 
complies with requirements.

This checklist exposure draft is available on the Internet on GAO's 
home page (http://www.gao.gov) under "Other Publications" and the 
subheading "Accounting and Financial Management." Copies of the JFMIP 
document can be downloaded from the JFMIP Web site (http://
www.jfmip.gov) under "JFMIP Documents" and the subheading "System 
Requirements.":

Signed by:

Jeffrey C. Steinhoff:

Managing Director:

Financial Management and Assurance:

CONTENTS:

Overview:

Overview: Authoritative Guidance:

Overview: How to Use This Checklist:

Benefit System Requirements:

Benefit System Requirements: Functional Requirements: Claims 
Acceptance and Tracking:

Benefit System Requirements: Functional Requirements: Claims 
Processing:

Benefit System Requirements: Functional Requirements: Claims 
Processing: Administrative Process:

Benefit System Requirements: Functional Requirements: Claims 
Processing: Eligibility Determination Processes:

Benefit System Requirements: Functional Requirements: Claims 
Processing: Computational Processes:

Benefit System Requirements: Functional Requirements: Benefit Payment 
Administration:

Benefit System Requirements: Functional Requirements: Benefit Payment 
Administration: Payee Information Maintenance Process:

Benefit System Requirements: Functional Requirements: Benefit Payment 
Administration: Payment Warehousing Process:

Benefit System Requirements: Functional Requirements: Benefit Payment 
Administration: Funds Availability Editing:

Benefit System Requirements: Functional Requirements: Benefit Payment 
Administration: Commitments:

Benefit System Requirements: Functional Requirements: Benefit Payment 
Administration: Obligations and Expenditures:

Benefit System Requirements: Functional Requirements: Benefit Payment 
Administration: Analysis:

Benefit System Requirements: Functional Requirements: Benefit Payment 
Administration: Payment Execution Process:

Benefit System Requirements: Functional Requirements: Benefit Payment 
Administration: Payment Confirmation and Follow-up Process:

Benefit System Requirements: Functional Requirements: Recovery 
Receivable Management:

Benefit System Requirements: Functional Requirements: Recovery 
Receivable Management: Recovery Receivable Establishment Process:

Benefit System Requirements: Functional Requirements: Recovery 
Receivable Management: Recovery Receivable Servicing Process:

Benefit System Requirements: Functional Requirements: Recovery 
Receivable Management: Collection Process:

Benefit System Requirements: Functional Requirements: Recovery 
Receivable Management: Offset:

Benefit System Requirements: Functional Requirements: Recovery 
Receivable Management: Funds Control:

Benefit System Requirements: Functional Requirements: Accounting for 
Benefit Transactions:

Benefit System Requirements: Functional Requirements: Accounting for 
Benefit Transactions: Entity Definition:

Benefit System Requirements: Functional Requirements: Accounting for 
Benefit Transactions: Account Definition:

Benefit System Requirements: Functional Requirements: Accounting for 
Benefit Transactions: Transaction Definition and Processing:

Benefit System Requirements: Functional Requirements: Accounting for 
Benefit Transactions: Audit Trails:

Benefit System Requirements: Functional Requirements: Reporting:

Benefit System Requirements: Functional Requirements: Reporting: 
External Reporting:

Benefit System Requirements: Functional Requirements: Reporting: 
Internal Reporting:

Benefit System Requirements: Functional Requirements: Reporting: 
Performance Reporting:

Benefit System Requirements: Functional Requirements: Reporting: 
Compulsory Notifications:

Benefit System Requirements: Functional Requirements: Interfaces:

Benefit System Requirements: Functional Requirements: Interfaces: 
Internal Interfaces:

Benefit System Requirements: Functional Requirements: Interfaces: 
External Interfaces:

Benefit System Requirements: Functional Requirements: Quality 
Assurance and Maintenance:

Benefit System Requirements: Functional Requirements: Technical 
Functions:

Benefit System Requirements: Functional Requirements: Technical 
Functions: General:

Benefit System Requirements: Functional Requirements: Technical 
Functions: Security and Internal Controls:

Benefit System Requirements: Functional Requirements: Technical 
Functions: Access to Information:

Benefit System Requirements: Functional Requirements: Technical 
Functions: Data Entry:

Benefit System Requirements: Functional Requirements: Technical 
Functions: Archiving and Purging:

Information Stores:

Information Stores: Application Information Stores:

Information Stores: Application Information Stores: Universal Data 
Elements:

Information Stores: Application Information Stores: Federally 
Administered Retirement Benefit Systems:

Information Stores: Application Information Stores: Federal Employment 
Retirement Benefit Systems:

Information Stores: Application Information Stores: Disability 
Benefits:

Information Stores: Application Information Stores: Death Benefits:

Information Stores: Application Information Stores: Survivor Benefits:

Information Stores: Other Benefits:

Information Stores: Other Benefits: Claimant Master Record Information 
Store:

Information Stores: Other Benefits: Financial Information Store:

Figure 1: Agency Financial Management Systems Architecture:

Related GAO Products:

ABBREVIATIONS:

ACH: automated clearinghouse:

ALC: agency location code:

CDO: chief disbursing officer:

CFO: chief financial officer:

C.F.R.: Code of Federal Regulations:

CSRS: Civil Service Retirement System:

DCA: Debt Collection Act of 1982:

DCIA: Debt Collection Improvement Act of 1996:

DOD: Department of Defense:

DOL: Department of Labor:

EFT: electronic funds transfer:

FACTS: Federal Agencies' Centralized Trial Balance System:

FASAB: Federal Accounting Standards Advisory Board:

FERS: Federal Employees Retirement System:

FFMIA: Federal Financial Management Improvement Act of 1996:

FMS: Financial Management Service:

FFMSR: Federal Financial Management System Requirements:

GMRA: Government Management Reform Act of 1994:

GPRA: Government Performance and Results Act of 1993:

HHS: Department of Health and Human Services:

IVR: interactive voice response:

IRS: Internal Revenue Service:

JFMIP: Joint Financial Management Improvement Program:

OMB: Office of Management and Budget:

OPM: Office of Personnel Management:

RRB: Railroad Retirement Board:

SFFAS: Statement of Federal Financial Accounting Standards:

SGL: U.S. Standard General Ledger:

SSA: Social Security Administration:

SSN: Social Security number:

TAFS: Treasury account fund symbol:

TFM: Treasury Financial Manual:

TIN: taxpayer identification number:

TOP: Treasury Offset Program:

U.S.C.: United States Code:

VA: Department of Veterans Affairs:

OVERVIEW:

FFMIA requires, among other things, that agencies implement and 
maintain financial management systems that substantially comply with 
federal financial management system requirements. These requirements 
are detailed in the Federal Financial Management System Requirements 
series issued by the Joint Financial Management Improvement Program 
(JFMIP) [FOOTNOTE 1] and in Circular A-127, Financial Management 
Systems, issued by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB). The JFMIP 
requirements document describes the federal financial system 
architecture as consisting of (1) core financial systems, (2) other 
financial and mixed systems (including the benefit system 
requirements), not all of which are applicable to all agencies, (3) 
shared systems, and (4) departmental executive information systems 
(systems to provide management information to all levels of 
management). [FOOTNOTE 2] Figure 1 is the JFMIP model that illustrates 
how these systems interrelate in an agency's overall systems 
architecture.

Figure 1: Agency Financial Management Systems Architecture:

[See PDF for image]

Source: JFMIP Benefit System Requirements (September 2001).

[End of figure]

To date, JFMIP has issued 13 of the 15 functional requirements shown in 
figure 1. [FOOTNOTE 3]

We are issuing this checklist--which reflects JFMIP's first issuance of 
the Benefit System Requirements (JFMIP-SR-01-01, September 2001)--to 
assist (1) agencies in implementing and monitoring their benefit 
system(s) and (2) managers and auditors in reviewing agency benefit 
systems to determine if they substantially comply with FFMI:

A. Five categories of federal benefit programs covered by these system 
requirements are retirement, disability, death, survivor, and a 
catchall covering things such as education benefits.

This checklist is not a requirement. It is provided as a tool for use 
by experienced staff. This checklist; the JFMIP source document; OMB 
Circular A-127, Financial Management Systems; and OMB's Revised 
Implementation Guidance for the Federal Financial Management 
Improvement Act (FFMIA) of 1996, issued January 4, 2001, should be used 
concurrently. Staff members who use this tool must apply experienced 
judgment in its interpretation and application. They must consider the 
impact of the completed checklist on the entire benefit system and 
whether the system, as a whole, substantially complies with 
requirements.

Authoritative Guidance:

OMB Circular A-127 and OMB's January 4, 2001, Revised Implementation 
Guidance for the Federal Financial Management Improvement Act provide 
the basis for assessing compliance with the FFMIA requirements. The OMB 
guidance identifies various criteria that an agency must meet to 
substantially comply with these requirements. One set of criteria 
listed in the OMB guidance is the JFMIP system requirements series.

The source of all the questions in this checklist is the JFMIP Benefit 
System Requirements (JFMIP-SR-01-01, September 2001). The JFMIP 
document acknowledges that benefit system functionality does not 
necessarily reside in a single software application or functional 
system. In fact, benefit information may reside in or may be calculated 
in a number of applications or systems. The benefit system described in 
the JFMIP document may consist of all these applications and/or 
systems, their interfaces, and the processes required to manage a 
benefit properly. It should be noted that the checklist is based on the 
existing published JFMIP standards and that changes in laws, 
regulations, and standards and practices since the standards were 
issued are not included in the checklist.

The JFMIP document segregates functional requirements into two general 
categories--mandatory and value-added. The mandatory requirements 
describe what the system must do. They consist of the minimum 
acceptable functionality necessary to establish a system and are based 
on federal laws, regulations, directives, or judicial decisions. 
Mandatory requirements are those against which agency heads are to 
evaluate their systems to determine substantial compliance with system 
requirements under FFMI:

A. These requirements apply to existing systems in operation and new 
systems planned or under development. The checklist uses "M" 
immediately following the question to indicate a mandatory system 
requirement.

The value-added requirements describe optional features and may consist 
of any combination of the following: (1) using state-of-the-art 
technology, (2) employing the preferred or best business practices, or 
(3) meeting the special management needs of an individual agency. 
Agencies should consider value-added features when judging systems 
options. The need for these value-added features in agency systems is 
left to the discretion of each agency head. The checklist uses "V" 
immediately following the question to indicate that the item is value-
added and not mandatory.

How to Use This Checklist:

OMB's 2001 implementation guidance provides chief financial officers 
(CFO) and inspectors general with a means for determining whether their 
agencies' financial management systems substantially comply with 
federal financial management system requirements. The annual reporting 
required by 31 U.S.C. § 3512(d) is one means of assisting agencies in 
determining of substantial compliance. Agencies can also use this 
checklist as a tool to help determine compliance with federal financial 
management system requirements.

Completing this checklist will allow agencies to systematically 
determine whether specific systems requirements are being met. In 
determining substantial compliance, agencies should assess the results 
of the completed checklist based on the benefit system requirements 
taken as a whole.

The checklist contains three columns with the first citing the 
question. Use the second column to answer each question "Yes," "No," or 
"N/A." Use the third column to explain your answer. A "Yes" answer 
should indicate that the agency's benefit system provides for the 
capability described in the question. For each "Yes" answer, the third 
column should contain a brief description of how the benefit system 
satisfies that capability and should also refer to a source that 
explains or shows the capability.

A "No" answer indicates that the capability does not exist. For a "No" 
answer, the third column should provide an explanation and, where 
applicable, a reference to any related supporting documentation (e.g., 
the agency is working on modifying or implementing its benefit system 
to have the capability available in subsequent years; management 
believes the capability is not cost-effective and will not enhance the 
benefit system's ability to manage operations). Cost-benefit studies or 
support for a "No" answer should be identified in the explanation 
column. If there are no cost-benefit studies or other support, a full 
explanation should be provided.

"No" answers should not be viewed individually or taken out of context. 
Rather, "No" answers should be assessed as to their impact on the 
overall benefit system and the extent to which the "No" answers inhibit 
the entire benefit system from achieving compliance.

Certain questions within the checklist may not be applicable to the 
agency. Answer these question(s) with "N/A" and provide an appropriate 
explanation in the third column.

BENEFIT SYSTEM REQUIREMENTS:

The benefit system requirements document provides high-level functional 
requirements for benefit systems that can help financial managers, 
program managers, and others control and account for federal benefit 
programs as defined in government and agency-specific statutes, 
regulations, guidelines, and need assessments. The benefit system 
requirements document is divided into two major sections, "functional 
requirements" and "information stores--required data elements," which 
are described below.

1. Functional requirements identify the major activities that are 
characteristic of the federal benefit system. A benefit system tracks 
the life of benefit claims from initial receipt through final payment 
and maintains a complete history of financial activity relating to 
those claims. The federal benefit system primarily consists of nine 
major functions and the data processed by those functions. The 
functions identified by the JFMIP source document are (1) claims 
acceptance and tracking, (2) claims processing, (3) benefit payment 
administration, (4) recovery receivable management, (5) accounting for 
benefit transactions, (6) reporting, (7) interfaces, (8) quality 
assurance and maintenance, and (9) technical functions.

2. Information stores--required data elements refers to the grouping of 
related types of data. The term information store (rather than database 
or file) is used to avoid any reference to the technical or physical 
infrastructure of the data storage medium. Actual data storage 
(physical databases and files) must be determined by each agency during 
system development and implemented based upon the benefit program's 
statutory requirements as well as the agency's technical environment, 
processing volumes, organizational structure, and degree of system 
centralization or decentralization. The JFMIP source document divides 
the required data elements into four major groupings. They are (1) 
application information stores, (2) claimant master record store, (3) 
program criteria store, and (4) financial information store.

The checklist questions follow the JFMIP source document, JFMIP-SR-01-
01, September 2001, and page number references follow each of the 
questions. It should be noted that not all questions will apply in all 
situations, and as with the use of any checklist, professional judgment 
should be exercised. Using the JFMIP source document and its "Appendix 
B: Glossary," which defines terms used, along with OMB Circular A-127, 
Financial Management Systems, and OMB's Revised Implementation Guidance 
for the Federal Financial Management Improvement Act (FFMIA) of 1996, 
issued January 4, 2001, will help ensure that the user is cognizant of 
the background information necessary to fully understand the questions.

Functional Requirements: Claims Acceptance and Tracking:

1. Does the benefit system capture all applicable and mandatory data 
elements (i.e., universal and appropriate) as specified in the 
Application Information Stores section of the benefit systems 
requirements document (JFMIP-SR-01-01)? M (p. 14); [FOOTNOTE 5]

2. Does the benefit system maintain all data elements specified in the 
Application Information Stores section so information is readily 
accessible through standard online queries [FOOTNOTE 6] or reports 
until approval [FOOTNOTE 7] or denial of the claim? M (p. 14);

3. By fiscal year 2003, will the benefit system provide for electronic 
acceptance of benefit applications? M (p. 14);

4. If an agency anticipates electronic receipt of 50,000 or more 
submittals of a particular form, will the benefit system allow multiple 
methods of electronic signatures for the submittal of each form, 
whenever feasible and appropriate? M (p. 14);

Functional Requirements: Claims Acceptance and Tracking:

5. Does the benefit system provide for the electronic acknowledgment of 
electronic forms that are successfully submitted? M (p. 14);

6. Does the benefit system capture various correspondences, including 
due process requests submitted by various electronic mediums, and does 
it automatically associate the correspondence with a specific claim 
plan of action? M (p. 14);

7. For manually submitted correspondence, does the benefit system link 
the correspondence for the required action to one of the following:

a. the specific application or:

b. the existing claimant master record? M (p. 14);

8. When electronic methods (e.g., Web-based communications) are used to 
facilitate claim form acceptance, does the benefit system incorporate 
input and completeness controls to ensure that only complete 
applications [FOOTNOTE 8] are accepted by the system? M (p. 14);

9. Does the benefit system user have the ability to flag a claimant's 
paper-based application as incomplete and to suspend further processing 
of the application until it is properly completed as specified by 
program requirements? M (p.14);

10. Does the benefit system store incomplete applications in accordance 
with agency policies and automatically purge incomplete applications 
after a specified period? M (p. 14);

11. For each claim, does the benefit system associate a unique 
identifier (e.g., initials or user code) of the employee assigned to 
review the claim? M (p.14);

12. Does the benefit system utilize an alternative application 
procedure that accommodates persons with disabilities? M (p.14);

13. Does the benefit system provide capabilities to track the status of 
due process or other appeal proceedings, when applicable, after an 
initial claim has been denied? M (p.14);

14. Does the benefit system maintain a record of pending claims and the 
status of other information, including:

a. where in the process an ongoing claim is located,

b. who is holding the claim,

c. what actions are needed to complete the claim,

d. whether additional information is needed, and:

e. accommodation of explanation codes to indicate the reason why the 
claim is pending? V (p. 15);

15. Does the benefit system allow the user to update the status of 
pending claims and other information? V (p. 15);

Functional Requirements: Claims Processing: Administrative Process:

16. Does the benefit system utilize claimant data that have been 
submitted electronically automatically without manual intervention? M 
(p. 15);

17. Does the benefit system have the ability to date and time stamp due 
process requests and other time-sensitive correspondence that have been 
received through electronic mediums? M (p. 15);

18. Does the benefit system accommodate automated case workload 
distribution by providing for various claim routing options [FOOTNOTE 
9] as determined and maintained by the system administrator? M (p. 15);

19. Does the benefit system indicate if the benefit payment calculation 
or verification thereof has occurred manually? M (p. 15);

20. Does the benefit system either provide the user with the ability to 
update a claimant's master record with the results of a manual claim 
validation or manual verification of the benefit amount or allow for 
the creation of a new master record, if none exists? M (p. 15);

21. Does the benefit system have the ability to capture the information 
needed from the claimant in order to complete an incomplete claim? M 
(p. 15);

22. Does the benefit system provide for electronic approvals of claims 
at all levels of the approval process, whenever feasible? M (p. 15);

23. Does the benefit system incorporate a notification mechanism that 
informs users (i.e., claim evaluators and supervisors) when an 
application has not completed processing within a time frame that can 
be specified by the agency? M (p. 15);

24. Does the benefit system facilitate user queries [FOOTNOTE 10] on 
individual claims? M (p. 16);

25. Does the benefit system accommodate explanation codes to indicate 
why a claim has been denied? M (p. 16);

26. Does the benefit system automatically create a claimant master 
record [FOOTNOTE 11] using the claimant information for initial claims 
that are approved, when a master record for the claimant did not 
previously exist? M (p. 16);

27. Does the benefit system automatically update an existing claimant 
master record [FOOTNOTE 12] to reflect the status (i.e., pending, 
approved, or rejected) of additional claims for other benefits the 
agency administers that are sought by the claimant? M (p. 16);

28. Does the benefit system automatically merge the mandatory claimant 
data maintained in the application information stores [FOOTNOTE 13] 
into the appropriate master record after a claim has been approved and 
a claimant master record has been established? M (p. 16);

29. Does the benefit system provide capability to generate statistics 
on approved and rejected claim applications? M (p. 16);

30. Does the benefit system provide capabilities to accept, identify, 
track, and report manual overrides of system-generated acceptance/
rejection recommendations? M (p. 16);

31. Does the benefit system allow a user, who has proper access, to 
reverse or affirm an initial decision regarding the denial of a benefit 
and process the claim accordingly? M (p. 16);

32. Does the benefit system provide capabilities to review all prior 
employee notations or decisions made while processing a benefit claim? 
M (p. 16);

33. Does the benefit system provide capabilities to record an estimated 
completion date for pending claims? V (p. 16);

34. Does the benefit system have the ability, where multiple claims 
exist for the same claimant, to process the claims sequentially based 
on order of precedence? V (p. 16);

Functional Requirements: Claims Processing: Eligibility Determination 
Processes:

35. Does the benefit system have the ability to automatically compare 
information contained in application(s) that have been submitted by a 
claimant against agency program eligibility criteria (i.e., screen 
applications for eligibility)? M (p. 16);

36. Does the benefit system have the ability to accept the manual 
validation of a claim? M (p. 16);

37. Does the benefit system have the ability to provide for maintaining 
separate eligibility criteria and processing routines by type of claim? 
M (p. 16);

38. Does the benefit system provide for the establishment of various 
age limitations, depending on the type of benefit, for automatic 
verification of program eligibility? [FOOTNOTE 14] M (p. 16);

39. Does the benefit system have the ability to cross-validate 
applicant information against data maintained for other benefit payment 
programs? [FOOTNOTE 15] M (p. 17);

40. Does the benefit system provide features to indicate that an 
applicant has submitted the required evidence? [FOOTNOTE 16] M (p. 17);

41. Does the benefit system provide features to create and maintain a 
system record of accepted and rejected claim applications? M (p. 17);

42. Does the benefit system provide tools to check the appropriate data 
files to determine whether the applicant has submitted a duplicate 
application or had a recent benefit application rejected? M (p. 17);

43. Whenever legally permitted, does the benefit system provide 
features to determine whether payments being made to the claimant in 
relation to other internal benefit payment programs affect the 
claimant's eligibility or payment amount for the benefit under 
consideration? M (p. 17);

44. Does the benefit system allow the user to suspend processing of a 
claim while verifying questionable information and to release the 
suspended status as appropriate? M (p. 17);

45. Does the benefit system provide the ability to inform an applicant 
of potential eligibility for other internal benefit payment programs? V 
(p. 17);

46. Does the benefit system have the ability to automatically validate 
survivor applicant information against information about the deceased/
former spouse or related former guardian that is maintained in a master 
record database? V (p. 17);

47. When permitted by statute, does the benefit system automatically 
validate dates of employment, earnings, and other claimant-specific 
data provided on the application for benefits against the work history 
and earnings information reported to central agencies such as the 
Internal Revenue Service (IRS), Social Security Administration (SSA), 
and Office of Personnel Management (OPM)? V (p. 17);

Functional Requirements: Claims Processing: Computational Processes:

48. Does the benefit system have the ability to determine if the 
effective date of the claim has been reached, [FOOTNOTE 17] and does it 
have the ability to initiate subsequent processing? M (p. 17);

49. Does the benefit system provide features to compute the amount of 
both recurring and nonrecurring benefit payments based on all available 
information? [FOOTNOTE 18] M (p. 17);

50. Does the benefit system determine the ending date for recurring 
payments of limited duration? M (p. 17);

51. When processing an approved claim for benefits, such as retirement, 
disability, death, survivor, and other claims, does the benefit system 
calculate the amount of recurring payment, or does it capture the 
amount of the claimant's recurring payment that has been determined 
externally? M (p. 17);

52. Does the benefit system provide flexibility in maintaining pay 
rates? [FOOTNOTE 19] M (p. 17);

53. Does the benefit system provide for adjusting the amount of payment 
when the claimant is receiving offsetting monetary amounts? [FOOTNOTE 
20] M (p. 17);

54. For federal and uniformed service retirement systems, does the 
benefit system identify whether the claimant retired under provisions 
of a voluntary separation incentive, and does it capture the amount of 
the incentive? M (p. 18);

55. For federal and uniformed service retirement systems, does the 
benefit system compute the base amount of retirement pay by determining 
the "highest paid 36 [FOOTNOTE 21] months of paid service?" M (p. 18);

56. Does the benefit system determine the creditable years of service 
based on dates of employment or active military service? M (p. 18);

57. Does the benefit system provide features to calculate the 
claimant's and/or related dependent's age based on the birth date 
provided in an application or other verified source for subsequent use 
in determining claimant eligibility? M (p. 18);

58. Does the benefit system provide for user defined reasonableness or 
tolerable limit checks on the amounts of benefit payments that are 
calculated by the system? M (p. 18);

59. Does the benefit system flag or suspend processing of a claim that 
fails reasonableness edits to facilitate manual verification of the 
amount computed? M (p. 18);

60. Does the benefit system enable approved users to resume processing 
a claim that was suspended for failing a reasonableness edit once it 
has been verified as accurate? M (p. 18);

61. Does the benefit system allow a user to initiate the calculation of 
a claimant's benefit amount at any time based on claimant data existing 
at the time the request is made? M (p. 18);

62. Does the benefit system have the ability to record the amount of 
manually computed benefit payments? M (p. 18);

63. Does the benefit system provide for an automatic system-initiated 
calculation or recalculation of benefit amount by claim type that is 
based on a specific user-defined event, such as claim validation and 
approval, court order, or claimant-initiated withholding change? M (p. 
18);

64. Does the benefit system provide for automated routines that access 
claimant master record data to facilitate calculating the amount of 
benefits due claimants? M (p. 18);

65. Does the benefit system provide features to calculate and send 
overpayment information [FOOTNOTE 22] to the receivables and 
collections subsidiary ledger? M (p. 18);

Functional Requirements: Benefit Payment Administration: Payee 
Information Maintenance Process:

66. Does the benefit system maintain payee information that includes 
data to support obligation, accounts payable, and disbursement 
processes? M (p. 19);

67. Does the benefit system support payments made to parties who act as 
agents for the payee without changing permanent claimant information 
that is maintained in the claimant's master record, such as the 
claimant's name, address, or financial institution? M (p. 19);

68. Does the benefit system allow the user to capture the current tax 
status, number of exemptions, and other information requested on 
applicable IRS withholding forms (i.e., W-4P, W-4S, and W-4V)? M (p. 
19);

69. Does the benefit system maintain detailed information for each 
payee to comply with IRS reporting requirements? [FOOTNOTE 23] M (p. 
19);

70. Does the benefit system provide the capability to automatically 
update payee records to reflect changes related to the automated 
clearinghouse (ACH) or electronic funds transfer (ETF)? [FOOTNOTE 24] M 
(p. 19);

71. Does the benefit system, at a minimum, accumulate actual payments 
for each payee annually? M (p. 19);

72. Does the benefit system provide search capability for payee 
information (e.g., payee name)? M (p. 19);

73. Does the benefit system produce payee lists based on agency-defined 
criteria (e.g., payee name and SSN)? M (p. 19);

74. Does the benefit system maintain, as part of the claimant's master 
record, a complete history of all financial transactions executed for 
each payee receiving benefits under the claim holder's master record? 
[FOOTNOTE 25] M (p. 20);

75. For all active payees, does the benefit system make the financial 
transaction history data of the most recent 18 months available for 
online query and review? M (p. 20);

76. Does the benefit system allow for maintaining deposit account 
information on at least two financial institutions for a single payee? 
V (p. 20);

Functional Requirements: Benefit Payment Administration: Payment 
Warehousing Process:

77. Does the benefit system have the ability to determine whether the 
benefit payment is a nonrecurring payment? M (p. 20);

78. Does the benefit system automatically determine the due date and 
amount of benefit payments? M (p. 20);

79. Does the benefit system reestablish payables for voided checks or 
EFTs that were not successful? M (p. 20);

80. Does the benefit system allow for reversing the accounting 
transaction leading to the disbursement and reestablishing a payable, 
as appropriate? M (p. 20);

81. Does the benefit system allow anticipated obligation or expenditure 
transactions so that documents may be entered early, stored, and posted 
at the appropriate date? V (p. 20);

82. Does the benefit system subject these documents to edit and 
validation procedures [FOOTNOTE 26] prior to posting? V (p. 20);

83. If the anticipated obligation does not occur, does the benefit 
system permit the user to delete the transaction without posting it? V 
(p. 20);

Functional Requirements: Benefit Payment Administration: Funds 
Availability Editing:

84. Does the benefit system allow for the recording of funding 
transactions? [FOOTNOTE 27] M (p. 21);

85. Does the benefit system include adequate controls to prevent 
recording obligations or expenditure transactions that exceed available 
balances? M (p. 21);

86. Does the benefit system also support recording obligations or 
expenditures that exceed available balances based on proper management 
approval? [FOOTNOTE 28] M (p. 21);

87. Does the benefit system provide for designated authorities to 
establish and modify the system's response [FOOTNOTE 29] to the failure 
of a funds availability edit? M (p. 21);

88. Does the benefit system record the financial impact of all 
transactions that affect the availability of funds, such as 
commitments, obligations, expenditures, and the establishment of, and 
collections against, recovery receivables? M (p. 21);

89. Does the benefit system automatically update all appropriate 
budgetary tables and ledger account balances (when applicable) to 
ensure that the system always maintains and reports the current status 
of funds for all open accounting periods? M (p. 21);

90. Does the benefit system provide for designated authorities to 
establish and modify the level of funds control using the elements of 
the classification structure, including object class, program, 
organization, project, and fund? V (p. 21);

91. Does the benefit system provide the ability to produce an online 
status of funds report down to the lowest level of the organizational 
structure, including amounts available or allotted, open commitments, 
open obligations, expenditures, and balance available? V (p. 21);

Functional Requirements: Benefit Payment Administration: Commitments:

92. Does the benefit system allow commitment transactions to be entered 
online from multiple locations? V (p. 21);

93. Does the benefit system maintain information related to each 
commitment transaction? [FOOTNOTE 30] V (p. 21);

94. Does the benefit system provide for modifications to commitment 
transactions, including ones that change the dollar amount or the 
accounting classification elements cited? V (p. 22);

95. Does the benefit system allow for commitment transactions to be 
future-dated, stored, and posted on the appropriate date? V (p. 22);

96. Does the benefit system close open commitments under the following 
circumstances:

a. by the system upon issuance of an obligating document,

b. by an authorized user, and:

c. as part of the year-end closing if the commitment is in an annual 
appropriation or in the last year of a multiyear appropriation? V (p. 
22);

97. Does the benefit system provide the capability to support 
commitment accounting based on agency needs? V (p. 22);

Functional Requirements: Benefit Payment Administration: Obligations 
and Expenditures:

98. Does the benefit system update budgetary tables to reflect 
obligations based on obligating documents and liquidate, at the user's 
request, the related commitments, either partially or fully? M (p. 22);

99. Does the benefit system update budgetary tables to reflect 
obligations for which there are no related commitments? M (p. 22);

100. Does the benefit system maintain information related to each 
obligation document, including amendments? M (p. 22);

101. At a minimum, does the benefit system capture the following:

a. obligating document number and type,

b. accounting classification elements, as appropriate,

c. referenced commitment, if applicable,

d. other identification, including benefit payee SSN or TIN, and:

e. dollar amounts? M (p. 22);

102. Does the benefit system allow obligation documents to be entered 
online and from multiple locations? M (p. 22);

103. Does the benefit system allow authorized modifications and 
cancellations of posted obligation documents? M (p. 22);

104. Does the benefit system provide online access to all unliquidated 
obligations by selection criteria (e.g., document number)? M (p. 22);

105. Does the benefit system maintain an online history file of closed-
out documents for a user-defined period? M (p. 22);

106. Does the benefit system close open obligating documents to 
accommodate both of the following circumstances:

a. automatically when classifying an unliquidated obligation to an 
expenditure, or:

b. by an authorized user? M (p. 22);

107. Does the benefit system allow multiple commitments to be combined 
into one obligation or expenditure document and one commitment document 
to be split into various obligating or expenditure documents? V (p. 
22);

Functional Requirements: Benefit Payment Administration: Analysis:

108. Does the benefit system maintain current information on 
obligations according to the classification elements established by the 
agency on a fund-by-fund basis? M (p. 23);

109. Does the benefit system sort and provide online access to both 
summary level and detailed information, based on the defined level of 
funds control, for those transactions that represent obligations and 
expenditures? M (p. 23);

110. Does the benefit system provide control features that ensure the 
amounts reflected in the fund control structure agree with the general 
ledger account balances at the end of each update cycle? M (p. 23);

111. Does the benefit system track the use of funds against operating 
or financial plans? V (p. 23);

Functional Requirements: Benefit Payment Administration: Payment 
Execution Process (Agencies with Delegated Disbursing Authority):

112. If the agency has delegated disbursing authority, [FOOTNOTE 31] 
does the benefit system support of the reporting and other requirements 
specified in volume I of the Treasury Financial Manual (TFM), Part 4, 
as exemplified by the following?

a. Report all disbursements made under the delegation in the agency's 
payment accounting reports to the Financial Management Service (FMS) 
using the appropriate agency accounting codes, as authorized by FMS. 
[FOOTNOTE 32]

b. Submit timely, accurate check issuance data to FMS no later than the 
close of business of the week in which the issue dates occur and at 
month's end. [FOOTNOTE 33]

c. Comply with applicable Treasury offset guidelines established under 
the authority of 31 U.S.C. § 3716(c). [FOOTNOTE 34]

d. Comply with FMS guidelines concerning applicable requirements, to 
include a payee's TIN on payment vouchers in accordance with 31 U.S.C. 
§ 3325(d). [FOOTNOTE 35]

e. Comply with all applicable EFT system requirements, including those 
related to message authentication and enhanced security, unless 
explicitly waived in writing by the chief disbursing officer (CDO). M 
(pp. 23 & 24);

Functional Requirements: Benefit Payment Administration: Payment 
Execution Process: (All Other Agencies);

113. Does the benefit system automatically identify and select payments 
to be disbursed in a particular payment cycle based on their due dates? 
[FOOTNOTE 36] M (p. 24);

114. Does the benefit system provide a function for review and 
certification by an authorized certifying officer? M (p. 24);

115. Does the benefit system allow changes to payment schedules by 
authorized staff prior to acceptance by the disbursing office? M (p. 
24);

116. Does the benefit system allow specific payments selected for 
disbursement to be excluded from the payment cycle and held for later 
payment? M (p. 24);

117. Does the benefit system automatically distinguish taxable benefit 
payments from nontaxable payments? M (p. 24);

118. Does the benefit system automatically compute net amounts to be 
disbursed after taking into account the following:

a. withholdings,

b. interest,

c. garnishments,

d. other offsets, as needed, in accordance with applicable regulations? 
M (p. 24);

119. Does the benefit system also generate the appropriate transactions 
to reflect the computed deductions and additions? M (p. 24);

120. Does the benefit system collect information on interest paid, if 
applicable, and record the amounts to the proper ledger account? M (p. 
24);

121. Does the benefit system calculate totals by agency location code 
(ALC) and Treasury account fund symbol (TAFS) for inclusion on the 
payment schedule? M (p. 24);

122. Does the benefit system sort individual payment detail by TAFS to 
enable SF-224 reconciliation? M (p. 24);

123. Does the benefit system provide for various forms of payment to be 
used (e.g., check or EFT)? M (p. 24);

124. Does the benefit system support Treasury-specific standards for 
format of check and EFT payment requests? M (p. 24);

125. Does the benefit system automatically update payment records based 
on updates recorded in the payee's master record, such as changes of 
address or changes in deposit account information? M (p. 24);

126. Does the benefit system allow a payment request to be removed from 
the automated scheduling stream and scheduled as a manual payment by an 
authorized official? M (p. 24);

127. Does the benefit system allow the user to trigger an immediate 
benefit payment for "emergency" situations? [FOOTNOTE 37] M (p. 24);

128. Does the benefit system provide the capability to schedule and 
make payments in various forms [FOOTNOTE 38] as required by an agency's 
disbursing offices, including physical media? [FOOTNOTE 39] M (p. 24);

129. Does the benefit system allow for cancellation of an entire 
payment schedule, or a single payment within a schedule, after payments 
are scheduled and prior to actual disbursement by Treasury? M (p. 24);

130. Does the benefit system provide offset features, if applicable, to 
reduce the payment amount due a claimant in accordance with applicable 
laws, regulations, and provisions of the Treasury Offset Program (TOP)? 
M (p. 24);

131. Does the benefit system properly record the impact [FOOTNOTE 40] 
of the entire amount of the transaction in both budgetary and 
proprietary terms? M (p. 24);

132. Does the benefit system provide for reissuing payments for 
misplaced payments and lost or stolen checks? M (p. 24);

133. Does the benefit system automatically consolidate amounts due a 
benefit claimant when the claimant is entitled to more than one benefit 
administered by the same agency? V (p. 25);

134. Does the benefit system itemize per Treasury specifications all 
payments covered by one check or EFT on a payment advice or addendum to 
the EFT file? V (p. 25);

135. Does the benefit system allow for the splitting of a single 
benefit payment into separate bank accounts (i.e., allotments) 
[FOOTNOTE 41] as indicated on the claimant's direct deposit request 
form? V (p. 25);

136. Does the benefit system provide for making payments in a foreign 
currency? V (p. 25);

Functional Requirements: Benefit Payment Administration: Payment 
Confirmation and Follow-up Process:

137. Does the benefit system update master record information resulting 
from payments made by the core system, if applicable? M (p. 25);

138. If original checks are lost, stolen, or destroyed, does the 
benefit system allow the user to record the outcome of the Treasury 
search when recertified checks are issued? M (p. 25);

139. Does the benefit system provide information about each payment to 
reflect the stage of the scheduling process that the payment has 
reached and the date each step was reached for the following processing 
steps:

a. payment scheduled,

b. schedule sent to the appropriate disbursing office, and:

c. payment issued by the appropriate disbursing office? M (p. 25);

140. Does the benefit system provide for comparison of the agency's 
payment schedule and the disbursing office's accomplished schedule? M 
(p. 25);

141. Does the benefit system update the payment information when 
confirmation is received from the disbursing office, including the paid 
schedule number, check numbers or trace numbers, date and amount of 
payment, and payment method? M (p. 25);

142. Does the benefit system maintain a history of every payment, 
including the following information:

a. authorizing document number,

b. payment schedule number,

c. payment date,

d. payment address, and:

e. TAFS charged? M (p. 25);

143. Does the benefit system provide online access to claimant and 
payment information? M (p. 25);

144. Does the benefit system provide online access to open documents 
based on agency selection criteria? M (p. 25);

145. Does the benefit system produce IRS 1099s in IRS acceptable form 
[FOOTNOTE 42] when required by IRS regulations? [FOOTNOTE 43] M (p. 
25);

146. Does the benefit system automatically liquidate the related 
liability or the in-transit amount when payment confirmation updates 
the system? M (p. 25);

Functional Requirements: Recovery Receivable Management: Recovery 
Receivable Establishment Process:

147. Does the benefit system record the establishment of receivables in 
the claimant's master record? M (p. 26);

148. Does the benefit system provide for the establishment of 
receivables in other systems, such as centralized accounts receivable 
systems, that are based on individual claim holder debts? M (p. 26);

149. Does the benefit system provide the capability for a user to 
select the reason the receivable is being recorded from a domain of 
recognized reasons? M (p. 26);

150. Does the benefit system support the establishment and tracking of 
receivables to be paid under installment plans, including plans for 
which payments have been rescheduled? M (p. 26);

151. Does the benefit system provide the capability for a user to 
record the beginning and ending dates of the payment period as well as 
the frequency and amount of each payment? M (p. 26);

152. Does the benefit system calculate, generate, and post the required 
ledger entries for receivables resulting from duplicate payments or 
erroneous payments as well as the corresponding expenditure reductions 
or other offsets? M (p. 26);

153. Does the benefit system print bills accommodating the generation 
of standard forms and turnaround documents (i.e., as a remittance 
advice)? M (p. 26);

154. Does the benefit system allow customized text in generated billing 
documents? M (p. 26);

155. Does the benefit system provide features to notify overpaid 
individuals (or a claimant's estate) of the following:

a. the amount overpaid and how and when overpayment occurred,

b. the right to appeal the overpayment determination,

c. the required recovery, and:

d. the right to request a waiver of recovery? M (pp. 26 & 27);

156. Does the benefit system record adjustments, both increases and 
decreases (i.e., noncash credits), and post them to a claimant's master 
record? M (p. 27);

157. Does the benefit system date the bills with the system-generated 
date or with the date provided by the authorized user? M (p. 27);

158. Does the benefit system accept transactions that generate 
receivables from other systems in a standard format for entry into the 
benefits system? M (p. 27);

159. Does the benefit system print statements as well as bills? V (p. 
27);

Functional Requirements: Recovery Receivable Management: Recovery 
Receivable Servicing Process:

160. Does the benefit system maintain detailed information by account 
(i.e., individual) sufficient to provide audit trails and to support 
billing and research activities? M (p. 27);

161. Does the benefit system update each master record when billing 
documents are generated and collections are received? M (p. 27);

162. Does the benefit system provide online query capability to 
receivable and account information? M (p. 27);

163. Does the benefit system provide information concerning the age of 
receivables, on a summary basis as well as an individual basis, to 
allow for management and prioritization of collection activities? M (p. 
27);

164. Does the benefit system provide automatic calculation and 
assessment of interest, administrative charges, and penalty charges, as 
applicable, on overdue receivables? M (p. 27);

165. Does the benefit system allow for the waiver of the charges with 
appropriate authority? M (p. 27);

166. Does the benefit system identify and report receivables that meet 
predetermined criteria for bad debt provisions or write-off? M (p. 27);

167. Does the benefit system maintain data for receivables referred to 
other federal agencies and/or outside organizations for collections? M 
(p. 27);

168. Does the benefit system automatically initiate transactions to 
record the write-off of delinquent or uncollectible receivables 
(including interest, penalties, and administrative charges) based on 
user-defined criteria? M (p. 27);

169. Does the benefit system also maintain data to monitor closed 
accounts? M (p. 27);

170. Does the benefit system produce dunning (collection) letters for 
overdue receivables in accordance with Treasury requirements and 
existing legislation? M (p. 27);

171. Does the benefit system allow authorized users to customize the 
dunning process parameters and dunning letter text? M (p. 27);

172. Does the benefit system provide information to allow either manual 
or automated reporting of delinquent accounts to commercial credit 
bureaus and referral to collection agencies or other appropriate 
governmental organizations? M (p. 27);

173. Does the benefit system maintain information needed to support 
reporting required by IRS? M (p. 27);

174. Does the benefit system maintain a history of billings and 
receipts for each receivable and account in accordance with agency 
requirements? M (p. 28);

175. Does the benefit system match receipts to the appropriate 
receivables and update system balances? M (p. 28);

176. Does the benefit system provide the ability to apply receipts to 
more than one receivable? M (p. 28);

177. Does the benefit system update receivable balances document by 
document, classifying and posting against principal, interest, and 
administrative fees as required by OMB Circular A-129, [FOOTNOTE 44] 
Managing Federal Credit Programs? M (p. 28);

178. Does the benefit system identify receivables that have been 
reduced by some means other than cash collections, such as waivers or 
write-offs? M (p. 28);

179. Does the benefit system provide for reestablishment of a 
receivable for checks returned due to insufficient funds? M (p. 28);

Functional Requirements: Recovery Receivable Management Collection 
Process:

180. Does the benefit system record complete and partial receipts 
according to the Debt Collection Act of 1982 (DCA), Debt Collection 
Improvement Act of 1996 (DCIA), as well as any applicable regulations? 
M (p. 28);

181. Does the benefit system record deposits and related debit vouchers 
for reconciliation to deposit confirmation information provided by 
Treasury or the banking system? M (p. 28);

182. Specifically, does the benefit system provide the user the 
capability to record the deposit ticket or debit voucher document 
amount, number, and date? M (p. 28);

183. If a claimant's master record is located when recording a deposit, 
does the benefit system provide the capability to display all active 
receivable accounts of record that are related to the claimant? M (p. 
28);

184. If a user is not able to locate an existing receivable in the 
master record of the person making a payment and the document being 
recorded is a deposit ticket item, does the benefit system provide the 
capability to associate the collection of funds to the claimant's 
master record, if one exists? M (p. 28);

185. Does the benefit system provide features to record the method of 
recovery? [FOOTNOTE 45] M (p. 28);

186. In order to suspend collection activities associated with the 
receivable, does the benefit system provide the capability to flag a 
claimant's receivable record to reflect due process status? M (p. 28);

187. Does the benefit system automatically allow collection activities 
to resume when due process has expired or the flag has been reversed? M 
(p. 28);

188. Does the benefit system capture whether the receivable has been 
petitioned or discharged in connection with bankruptcy proceedings? M 
(p. 28);

189. Does the benefit system provide for processing cash or credit card 
receipts against outstanding receivables? V (p. 28);

Functional Requirements: Recovery Receivable Management: Offset:

190. Does the benefit system provide the ability to report overdue 
receivables with associated SSN or TIN data to Treasury for possible 
offset? M (p. 29);

191. Does the benefit system allow for offset of funds due to 
delinquent indebtedness through the following:

a. administrative offset,

b. federal employee salary offset, and:

c. income tax refund offset? M (p. 29);

192. Does the benefit system comply with the requirements of the IRS 
Tax Refund Offset Program and TOP requirements? M (p. 29);

193. Does the benefit system provide the capability for a user to 
record the effective date of the offset plan? M (p. 29);

194. Does the benefit system incorporate logic to reflect the legal 
authority as to whether the payment type may be reduced by offset or is 
exempt from TOP or other offsets? M (p. 29);

195. Can the benefit system exclude certain receivables [FOOTNOTE 46] 
automatically from the offset function? M (p. 29);

196. Does the benefit system automatically subject receivables to 
offset, which had been previously excluded because of due process and 
bankruptcy status, once status has been resolved? M (p. 29);

197. Does the benefit system provide the capability for a user to 
select from a domain of offset program participants? [FOOTNOTE 47] V 
(p. 29);

198. If the desired offset program recipient does not exist as a 
participant, does the benefit system provide the capability for the 
user to create a participant record? V (p. 29);

199. When a retirement account has both garnishment and former spouse 
deductions, does the benefit system identify bankruptcy debt so that it 
is bypassed when computing the legally mandated 65 percent maximum 
deduction amount? V (p. 29);

Functional Requirements: Recovery Receivable Management: Funds 
Control:

200. Does the benefit system properly record the budgetary effect on 
U.S. Standard General Ledger (SGL) balances for all transactions 
typically involved with receivable management? [FOOTNOTE 48] M (p. 30);

Functional Requirements: Accounting for Benefit Transactions: Entity 
Definition:

201. Does the benefit system allow for recording transactions in 
multiple TAFS and various fund types? [FOOTNOTE 49] M (p. 30);

202. Does the benefit system accommodate reporting for multiple 
programs within a TAFS, based on accounting classification elements? 
[FOOTNOTE 50] M (p. 30);

Functional Requirements: Accounting for Benefit Transactions: Account 
Definition:

203. Does the benefit system use account titles consistent with the 
account titles provided in the SGL? M (p. 31);

204. Does the benefit system use account definitions consistent with 
the account definitions provided in the SGL? M (p. 31);

205. Does any expansion in the chart of accounts roll up to the 
accounts as defined in the SGL? [FOOTNOTE 51] M (p. 31);

206. Does the benefit system provide subsidiary ledger support for SGL 
accounts? M (p. 31);

207. Does the benefit system also support reconciliation of SGL control 
accounts to their respective subsidiary records by accounting period? M 
(p. 31);

208. Does the benefit system provide the capability to create 
additional subaccounts to the general ledger for agency-specific 
tracking and control? M (p. 31);

209. Do these subaccounts roll up to the SGL accounts? M (p. 31);

Functional Requirements: Accounting for Benefit Transactions: 
Transaction Definition and Processing:

210. Does the benefit system use standard transactions to record 
accounting events and to control the related updating of other 
information [FOOTNOTE 52] maintained in the system? M (p. 31);

211. Does the benefit system allow standard transactions, including 
system-generated transactions, to be established, modified, or deleted 
by authorized personnel? M (p. 31);

212. Does the benefit system allow changes to be traced? M (p. 31);

213. Does the benefit system generate and post compound debit and 
credit entries to the SGL accounts? M (p. 31);

214. Does the benefit system update both budgetary and proprietary SGL 
accounts based on a single input transaction? M (p. 31);

215. Does the benefit system provide the capability to add, modify, and 
maintain editing and posting rules through systems tables controlled by 
authorized personnel? M (p. 31);

216. Does the benefit system perform integrity checks on batches 
received via interfaces? M (p. 31);

217. Do the integrity checks include batch numbers to detect duplicate 
or skipped batches and the validity of header and trailer records? 
[FOOTNOTE 53] M (p. 31);

218. Does the benefit system process transactions consistent with SGL 
account descriptions and postings? M (p. 31);

219. Does the benefit system process system-generated transactions, 
such as the following:

a. automated payment scheduling,

b. accruals,

c. closing entries,

d. recurring payments, and:

e. transactions that generate other transactions in those cases in 
which a single transaction is not sufficient? M (p. 32);

220. Does the benefit system automatically liquidate, partially or in 
full, balances of preceding documents when entering dependent 
documents? M (p. 32);

221. Is this capability used in the liquidation of commitments, 
obligations, payables, receivables, or other items, as appropriate? 
[FOOTNOTE 54] M (p. 32);

222. Does the benefit system provide control over the correction and 
reprocessing of all erroneous transactions through the use of error 
files or suspense accounts? M (p. 32);

223. Are erroneous transactions maintained and tracked until corrected, 
posted, or deleted at the specific request of an authorized user? M (p. 
32);

224. Does the benefit system support management controls to ensure the 
following?

a. Transactions are processed in accordance with government and agency-
prescribed standards and procedures.

b. The integrity of data in the system is maintained.

c. Access is restricted to authorized users. M (p. 32);

225. Does the benefit system provide transaction edits that control, at 
a minimum, fund availability, account structure, and tolerance levels 
between related transactions, such as between an obligation and its 
related accrual? M (p. 32);

226. Does the benefit system provide controls to prevent the creation 
of duplicate transactions? M (p. 32);

227. Does the benefit system post to the current and prior accounting 
months concurrently until the prior month closing? M (p. 32);

228. Does the benefit system maintain and provide online queries and 
reports on balances separately for the current and prior months? M (p. 
32);

229. At a minimum, does the benefit system maintain balances online for 
both the current and prior months until the prior month closing? M (p. 
32);

230. Does the benefit system provide the capability to enter and store 
for future processing any transactions in the current month for 
processing in the subsequent month? V (p. 32);

Functional Requirements: Accounting for Benefit Transactions: Audit 
Trails:

231. Does the benefit system provide audit trails to trace transactions 
from the following:

a. source documents,

b. original input,

c. other systems,

d. system generated transactions, and:

e. internal assignment transactions through the system? M (p. 32);

232. Does the benefit system provide transaction details to support 
account balances? M (p. 32);

233. Does the benefit system provide audit trails to trace source 
documents and transactions through successive levels of summarization 
to the financial statements and reverse? M (p. 32);

234. Does the benefit system provide audit trails to identify changes 
made to system parameters and tables that would affect the processing 
or reprocessing of any financial transactions? M (p. 32);

235. Does the benefit system provide for all types of transactions the 
capability to select items for review based on user-defined criteria? 
[FOOTNOTE 55] M (p. 32);

236. Does the benefit system provide audit trails that identify the 
following actions by the originator:

a. document input,

b. changes,

c. approvals, and:

d. deletions? M (p. 32);

237. Does the benefit system provide the capability to record the user 
identification, date, and time updated for each transaction affecting 
the general and subsidiary accounts? M (p. 33);

Functional Requirements: Reporting: External Reporting:

238. Does the benefit system maintain accounting data to support 
reporting in accordance with FASAB accounting standards and OMB and 
Treasury reporting requirements? [FOOTNOTE 56] M (p. 33);

239. Does the benefit system provide summarized data electronically to 
systems used by the agency for decision support? M (p. 33);

240. Does the benefit system provide for the preparation of external 
reports, such as those required by Treasury and OMB? [FOOTNOTE 57] M 
(p. 33);

241. Does the benefit system report events and transactions according 
to the accounting classification elements established and within a 
given accounting period? [FOOTNOTE 58] M (p. 34);

242. Does the benefit system maintain the information required for 
program performance, financial performance, and financial management 
performance measures needed for budgeting, program management, and 
financial statement presentation? M (p. 34);

243. Does the benefit system provide the capability to produce all 
relevant reports, statements, or returns required by IRS, including 
year-end 1099 statements? M (p. 34);

244. Does the benefit system allow a user to request a reissued tax 
statement for the current or previous year? M (p. 34);

245. Does the benefit system provide for an automated methodology of 
data manipulation and data exportation? V (p. 34);

246. Does the benefit system provide for automatic translation of 
foreign currency payments based on the exchange rate specified by the 
user? [FOOTNOTE 59] V (p. 34);

247. Does the benefit system allow a user to request a reissued tax 
statement for the previous 3 years? V (p. 34);

Functional Requirements: Reporting: Internal Reporting:

248. Does the benefit system provide for the production of formatted 
reports? M (p. 34);

249. Does the benefit system allow for the reformatting of reports to 
allow for the following attributes:

a. the presentation of different sorts of information,

b. the presentation of only specific information in the format 
selected,

c. the summarization of data, and:

d. the modification of report formats to tailor the reports to the 
specific requirements of the user? M (p. 34);

250. Does the benefit system provide for program cost accounting data 
to support reporting requirements specified in OMB Bulletin No. 01-09, 
Form and Content of Agency Financial Statements? M (p. 34);

251. Does the benefit system provide for program cost accounting data 
to support the decision-making process in managing an agency's 
programs, which includes the following features?

a. Cost reports to be used in the analysis of programmatic activities.

b. Schedules and operating statements based on the accounting 
classification elements and agency criteria.

c. Meaningful cost information needed to support performance measures.

d. Ability to transfer cost information directly to and from other 
systems. M (p. 34);

252. Does the benefit system determine the cost of information for 
comparison to other program data to determine compliance with planned 
budgeted activities? V (p. 35);

253. Does the benefit system support the use of historical data to 
conduct variance analysis? V (p. 35);

Functional Requirements: Reporting: Performance Reporting:

254. Does the benefit system provide features to compute and maintain 
performance trends, such as the following?

a. Number and dollar value of benefit payments made.

b. Average benefit payment.

c. Benefit payments made by operating levels and geographic region. M 
(p. 35);

255. Does the benefit system provide features to compute and maintain 
efficiency measures to help determine the effective use of agency 
resources, [FOOTNOTE 60] such as the following measurements?

a. Number of applications processed.

b. Number of awards.

c. Number of denials. M (p. 35);

256. Does the benefit system provide features to compute, for the 
entire claimant population, the length of time claimants have received 
benefits? [FOOTNOTE 61] M (p. 35);

257. Does the benefit system provide features to automatically compute 
and maintain efficiency measures such as the following?

a. Administrative cost per application approved.

b. Time required to process a claim application. V (p. 35);

Functional Requirements: Reporting: Compulsory Notifications:

258. Does the benefit system provide for issuing standard notices for a 
variety of user-defined events? [FOOTNOTE 62] M (p. 35);

259. Does the benefit system allow the user to add custom text for each 
standard correspondence type? M (p. 35);

260. Does the benefit system allow the user to record that the U.S. 
Postal Service has returned correspondence as undeliverable? M (p. 35);

261. Does the benefit system automatically capture various electronic 
correspondences, including due process requests submitted through 
various electronic mediums, and associate them to the specific claim 
and required action? M (p. 36);

262. For manually submitted correspondence, does the benefit system 
provide for capturing such requests and associating them with the 
specific claim and required action? M (p. 36);

Functional Requirements: Reporting: Compulsory Notifications:

263. Does the benefit system have the ability to capture or record the 
date on which a request for appeals-related information is received 
from a claimant or an authorized representative? M (p. 36);

Functional Requirements: Interfaces: Internal Interfaces:

264. Does the benefit system provide the capability to interface with 
the agency core accounting system to record the accounting impact of 
financial activity at the SGL level daily to support consolidated 
financial reporting? M (p. 36);

265. Does the benefit system provide standard input record format(s) 
for interface of transactions from other systems? M (p. 36);

266. Does the benefit system subject all transactions from interfacing 
systems to its system edits, validations, and error correction 
procedures? M (p. 36);

267. Does the benefit system maintain and track erroneous transactions 
until corrected, posted, or deleted by an authorized user? M (p. 36);

268. When a major benefit system function is performed by the core 
system, does the benefit system provide the capability to automatically 
update detailed claimant-related information that is maintained in the 
core system? [FOOTNOTE 63] M (p. 36);

269. Does the benefit system provide the capability to interface with 
the agency's cost accounting system? M (p. 36);

270. Does the benefit system provide a two-way interface with the core 
system for purposes of funds control and funds availability 
verification? V (p. 36);

Functional Requirements: Interfaces: External Interfaces:

271. Does the benefit system provide capabilities allowing interface 
with central agency financial systems, [FOOTNOTE 64] such as the 
capability to:

a. receive and read the deposit reconciliation file from Treasury and 
produce a report of the matched data and differences,

b. produce a file of all hold check transactions as they are created 
and periodically transmit the hold check file to Treasury,

c. produce and transfer a file of changes to EFT payments previously 
forwarded to Treasury for release,

d. produce and transfer a file of changes to be made to the home 
address file in Treasury,

e. receive and process the data on the returned check file sent by 
Treasury's recertification system, including generating returned check 
transactions and updating account data, and:

f. receive and automatically process an ACH update file (containing 
changes to EFT information) from Treasury or other sources on a 
recurring basis? M (p. 37);

272. Does the benefit system receive information from SSA records to 
verify an applicant's name, SSN, and income information, when legally 
permitted? V (p. 37);

273. Does the benefit system provide features to verify an applicant's 
income against civil service annuity, military retirement, and IRS 
earnings records, when legally permitted? V (p. 37);

Functional Requirements: Quality Assurance and Maintenance:

274. Does the benefit system provide capabilities to select benefit 
claims based on agency program evaluation criteria, such as dollar 
thresholds and duration of benefit payment, for subsequent review? M 
(p. 37);

275. Does the benefit system provide the ability to monitor and update 
a claimant's master records to reflect changes in circumstances 
affecting a claimant's eligibility or the amount of the payment? M (p. 
37);

276. Does the benefit system provide capabilities to capture claimant 
(or relative) reported matters such as the following changes?

a. Death.

b. Change in amount of earned or unearned income.

c. Change in residence.

d. Marriage, divorce, or separation.

e. Absence from the United States.

f. Change in disability condition.

g. Eligibility for other benefits.

h. Change in net worth or resources of the claimant.

i. Change in school attendance.

j. Change in composition of household.k. Change in citizenship or alien 
status. M (pp. 37 & 38);

277. Does the benefit system provide for recording and maintaining a 
customer service representative's notes or comments that can be linked 
to the claimant's master record? M (p. 38);

278. Does the benefit system provide features to record death 
information provided from voluntary sources? [FOOTNOTE 65] M (p. 38);

279. Does the benefit system provide capabilities to record the method 
[FOOTNOTE 66] used to independently verify the death of a claimant 
before terminating benefits? M (p. 38);

280. Does the benefit system provide the ability to maintain a schedule 
of continuing disability reviews at the individual claim level, if 
applicable? M (p. 38);

281. Does the benefit system also provide the ability to maintain the 
status of a schedule of continuing disability reviews within the 
claimant's master record? M (p. 38);

282. Does the benefit system provide capabilities to track the status 
of appeal proceedings when a change is made affecting a current 
claimant's level of benefits? M (p. 38);

283. Does the benefit system provide features to record termination of 
benefit payments, including the following notations:

a. event or reason for termination, such as death or increase in 
income, and:

b. date of event (and thus effective date of benefit cessation)? M (p. 
38);

284. Does the benefit system provide features to determine if benefits 
are commensurate with a claimant's gender? V (p. 38);

285. Does the benefit system have the ability to select benefit payment 
calculations based on statistical sampling techniques for the purpose 
of verifying calculations? V (p. 38);

286. Does the benefit system provide the ability to generate a random 
sample of claimants to periodically survey their satisfaction with the 
agency's benefit claims process? [FOOTNOTE 67] V (p. 38);

287. Does the benefit system allow users to suspend payment to 
claimants when fraud is suspected, or when a death has been reported 
but not yet verified by an authoritative source (e.g., SSA)? V (p. 38);

288. Does the benefit system allow users to cancel a previously 
recorded suspected death of a claimant and place the claimant back in a 
payment status, if appropriate? V (p. 38);

Functional Requirements: Technical Functions: General:

289. Does the benefit system provide for system back up and recovery in 
accordance with relevant OMB circulars? M (p. 38);

290. Does the benefit system adhere to the applicable final Electronic 
and Information Technology Accessibility Standards [FOOTNOTE 68] issued 
by the Architectural and Transportation Barriers Compliance Board? M 
(pp. 38 & 39);

291. Does the benefit system allow users to input parameters required 
to run batch jobs in a production mode either daily, monthly, 
quarterly, or yearly? M (p. 39);

292. Does the benefit system provide all users the capability to 
perform a "print screen" function? M (p. 39);

Functional Requirements: Technical Functions: Security and Internal 
Controls:

293. Does the benefit system provide flexible security facilities to 
control user access at varying degrees, including the following:

a. overall system access,

b. capability to perform specific functions, such as inquiries and 
updates, and:

c. access to certain functionalities? M (p. 39);

294. Does the benefit system provide capability to define access to 
specific functions by named user, class of user, and position? M (p. 
39);

295. Does the benefit system provide for multiple levels of approvals 
based on user-defined criteria, including dollar limits and type of 
document processed? M (p. 39);

296. Does the benefit system provide the capability to perform 
reconciliation routines for internal participant accounts, ledgers, and 
funds? M (p. 39);

297. Does the benefit system have the capability to identify 
unsuccessful reconciliations via an error log or error report? M (p. 
39);

298. Does the benefit system establish appropriate administrative, 
technical, and physical safeguards to ensure the security and 
confidentiality of records? M (p. 39);

299. Do these safeguards protect the records against anticipated 
threats or hazards to their security or integrity that could result in 
substantial harm, embarrassment, inconvenience, or unfairness to any 
individual on whom information is maintained? M (p. 39);

300. Does the benefit system provide a mechanism to monitor changes in 
software coding and the responsible individual (authorized user)? M (p. 
39);

Functional Requirements: Technical Functions: Access to Information:

301. Does the benefit system comply with the disclosure provisions of 
the Privacy Act of 1974, [FOOTNOTE 69] as amended? M (p. 39);

302. Does the benefit system allow for the information contained in the 
system to be queried and detailed data to be presented, as requested? M 
(p. 39);

303. Does the benefit system's query capability allow for user-defined 
criteria when accessing data for open or closed accounting periods? M 
(p. 39);

304. Does the benefit system provide users with access to online 
guidance or help for performing system functions? M (p. 39);

305. If a claimant's or claim holder's record is not located via query, 
does the benefit system display a message indicating that the 
transaction cannot be completed and that further research is required? 
M (p. 39);

306. Does the benefit system present information resulting from system 
queries in an understandable format for nontechnical users? M (p. 39);

307. Does the benefit system also present information resulting from 
system queries in an unformatted fashion for more technically 
proficient users? M (p. 39);

308. Does the benefit system provide the capability to access 
historical data records that are removed from online viewing, including 
items such as the following?

a. Individual benefit payments.

b. Receivables.

c. Collection data. M (p. 39);

309. Does the benefit system allow users to design extract files for 
their specific requirements? M (p. 40);

310. Does the benefit system allow users to perform table look-ups and 
expansion of codes when needed to clarify the information contained 
within the results of system queries or reports? M (p. 40);

311. Does the benefit system provide features (i.e., matching programs) 
to facilitate verification using information extracted from the system 
for comparison against benefit programs administered by other agencies, 
when legally permitted? M (p. 40);

312. Does the benefit system facilitate the analysis of information 
contained in the system by allowing analysts to obtain report 
information and the results of system queries in data files that can be 
transferred to other applications or analytical tools? M (p. 40);

313. Does the benefit system provide for easy access to historical 
files for comparative, analytical, and trend information? M (p. 40);

314. Does the benefit system provide for self-service, claimant-
initiated requests that can perform the following functions?

a. Enable the claimants to request the reissuance of misplaced payments 
using a Web browser.

b. Enable the claimants to access decision tree functions to help guide 
them through self-service transactions through a Web browser.

c. Have pop-up windows to help annuitants when making changes to files 
through a Web browser.

d. Enable claimant to complete forms using a Web browser.

e. Have the ability to verify the claimant security information through 
a Web browser.

f. Provide access to claimant retirement-related data through 
interactive voice response (IVR).

g. Make IVR available for claimant inquiries 24 hours a day, 7 days a 
week, with the exception of scheduled outages.

h. Allow claimants to initiate changes to their accounts through IVR.

i. Have the ability to support multiple languages (e.g., English and 
Spanish). V (p. 40);

Functional Requirements: Technical Functions: Data Entry:

315. Does the benefit system utilize various automated input devices 
when hard copy applications and correspondence are received, such as, 
for example, the utilization, whenever feasible, of optical recognition 
devices, digital imaging tools, or other input streamlining technology 
when processing standard hard copy applications or other required 
correspondence? M (p. 40);

316. Does the benefit system support both batch and real-time online 
data entry, and does it use the same edit and update rules, as 
appropriate, for each mode? M (p. 40);

317. Does the benefit system support simultaneous data entry or access 
by multiple users in a variety of access modes? M (p. 40);

318. Do the benefit system user entry and query screens support 
validation of entered codes? M (p. 40);

319. Does the benefit system assist users in determining correct codes 
if an invalid code is entered? M (p. 40);

320. Does the benefit system provide for inquiry by the user to verify 
valid codes during the data entry process? M (p. 40);

321. Does the benefit system provide the capability to display inputs 
required to complete transactions by a user based on the selection of 
transaction type? M (p. 40);

322. Whenever possible, does the benefit system utilize keystroke-
reducing tools such as drop-down menus to reduce the chance of data 
entry error? M (p. 40);

323. Does the benefit system display a message to the user notifying 
him or her of the acceptance or rejection of each transaction once all 
inputs are completed? M (p. 41);

324. Does the benefit system identify erroneous inputs with corrective 
recommendations? V (p. 41);

325. Does the benefit system provide the capability for financial users 
to create comments relating to all types of transactions using free-
form text? V (p. 41);

Functional Requirements: Technical Functions: Archiving and Purging:

326. Does the benefit system provide an automated means for permanently 
storing electronic data? M (p. 41);

327. Does the benefit system archive transactions and related 
information needed for audit trails in a format accessible by audit 
software? M (p. 41);

328. Does the benefit system provide the authorized system 
administrator with the flexibility to determine whether records are to 
be archived or purged? M (p. 41);

329. Does the benefit system allow selective action on the documents 
that meet the criteria for being archived or purged? M (p. 41);

330. Does the benefit system include the capability to establish and 
maintain user-defined archival criteria? M (p. 41);

331. Does the benefit system retain its records in accordance with 
federal regulations established by the National Archives and Records 
Administration, GAO, and others? M (p. 41);

332. Does the benefit system prevent the purging of transactions prior 
to the proper period in accordance with regulations governing the 
retention of documents and transactions? M (p. 41);

Information Stores: Application Information Stores: Universal Data 
Elements:

333. Does the benefit system capture the name and address of the claim 
holder? [FOOTNOTE 70] M (p. 42);

334. Does the benefit system capture the SSN of the claim holder? M (p. 
42);

335. Does the benefit system capture the birth date of the claim 
holder? M (p. 42);

336. Does the benefit system capture the date of the initial claim? M 
(p. 42);

337. Does the benefit system capture claimant information, if other 
than the claim holder, including the following information:

a. name, address, SSN, and birth date and:

b. claimant's relationship to claim holder? [FOOTNOTE 71] M (p. 42);

338. Does the benefit system capture the name and relationship of a 
representative payee, including estate executors or legal guardians, 
when applicable? M (p. 42);

339. Does the benefit system capture the specific benefit for which the 
claim is made? M (p. 42);

340. Does the benefit system capture the claimant address? M (p. 42);

341. Does the benefit system capture bank information for direct 
deposit, including, if applicable, the American Bankers Association 
routing number, claimant bank account number, and account type? M (p. 
42);

342. Does the benefit system capture the type of evidence or proof 
required and submitted, when applicable? M (p. 42);

343. Does the benefit system capture the status of the claim (e.g., 
approved, pending, or denied)? M (p. 42);

344. Do benefit systems relating to taxable programs capture 
information needed to determine the withholding amount, such as the 
following:

a. withholding status, [FOOTNOTE 72]

b. tax number of withholding allowances,

c. backup withholding, and:

d. additional voluntary amount of tax withholding? M (p. 42);

345. If a benefit system is used in administering "means tested 
programs," does it capture the following information?

a. Claimant wages, salaries, and other income that are considered in 
determining eligibility and/or benefit amounts.

b. Types and amounts of assets owned by the claimant, which are 
considered in determining eligibility and/or benefit amounts. M (p. 
43);

346. Does the benefit system capture the gender of a claimant? 
[FOOTNOTE 73] V (p. 43);

Information Stores: Application Information Stores: Federally 
Administered Retirement Benefit Systems:

347. Does the benefit system capture the effective date of retirement? 
M (p. 43);

348. Does the benefit system capture the claim holder or claimant 
dependency information? [FOOTNOTE 74] M (p. 43);

349. Does the benefit system capture the dates of creditable employment 
[FOOTNOTE 75] of the claim holder? M (p. 43);

350. Does the benefit system capture historical earnings data [FOOTNOTE 
76] of the claim holder required for determining eligibility or the 
amount of benefits? M (p. 43);

351. Does the benefit system capture total participant and employer 
contributions to the retirement plan made on behalf of the participant? 
M (p. 43);

352. Does the benefit system capture current balance of vested employee 
and employer contributions? V (p. 44);

353. Does the benefit system capture other names, such as a maiden 
name, the claim holder has used? V (p. 44);

354. Does the benefit system capture the phone number of the claimant? 
V (p. 44);

355. Does the benefit system capture any other unique identifying 
number? V (p. 44);

356. Does the benefit system capture the date of final separation? M 
(p. 44);

357. Does the benefit system capture lump sum [FOOTNOTE 77] 
distributions versus annuity distributions? M (p. 44);

358. Does the benefit system capture annuity selection? [FOOTNOTE 78] M 
(p. 44);

359. Does the benefit system capture present marital status? M (p. 44);

360. Does the benefit system capture spouse's name, date of birth, SSN, 
and date of marriage, when applicable? M (p. 44);

361. Does the benefit system capture the name, date of birth, SSN, and 
dates of marriage and divorce of former spouses who have court-ordered 
annuities? M (p. 44);

362. Does the benefit system capture the percentage or dollar amount of 
a court-ordered former spouse annuity? M (p. 44);

363. Does the benefit system capture the highest pay scale, (grade) 
level, or amount of highest salary and related dates? M (p. 44);

364. Does the benefit system capture the voluntary separation monetary 
incentive? M (p. 44);

Information Stores: Application Information Stores: Disability 
Benefits:

365. Does the benefit system capture the type of disability or 
disability code? M (p. 44);

366. Does the benefit system capture the date of disability onset or 
injury? M (p. 44);

367. Does the benefit system capture the degree of impairment or 
diagnosis? M (p. 44);

368. Does the benefit system capture the name of examining physician? M 
(p. 44);

369. Does the benefit system capture where the claimant's injury 
occurred? M (p. 44);

370. Does the benefit system capture whether the disability was caused 
by employment or was related to military service? V (p. 45);

371. Does the benefit system capture the student status of the claimant 
or dependent(s) (e.g., full-time)? V (p. 45);

Information Stores: Application Information Stores: Death Benefits:

372. Does the benefit system capture claimant's relation to claim 
holder? M (p. 45);

373. Does the benefit system capture the dates of creditable employment 
of the claim holder, including military service, when used in 
determining eligibility and the amount of benefits? M (p. 45);

374. Does the benefit system capture claimant dependency information 
when it affects the benefit amount? M (p. 45);

375. Does the benefit system capture the date married, when applicable? 
M (p. 45);

376. Does the benefit system capture the date divorced, when 
applicable? M (p. 45);

377. Does the benefit system capture the date of claim holder death? M 
(p. 45);

378. Does the benefit system capture the claimant's or claim holder's 
dependent(s) student status? [FOOTNOTE 79] V (p. 45);

Information Stores: Application Information Stores: Survivor Benefits:

379. Does the benefit system capture the claimant's relation to the 
claim holder? M (p. 45);

380. Does the benefit system capture the dates of creditable employment 
of the claim holder, [FOOTNOTE 80] including military service when used 
in determining eligibility and the amount of benefits? M (p. 45);

381. Does the benefit system capture claim holder or claimant 
dependency information? [FOOTNOTE 81] M (p. 45);

382. Does the benefit system capture the date [the claim holder was] 
married, when applicable? [FOOTNOTE 82] M (p. 45);

383. Does the benefit system capture the date [the claim holder was] 
divorced, when applicable? [FOOTNOTE 83] M (p. 45);

384. Does the benefit system capture the date of claim holder death? M 
(p. 45);

385. Does the benefit system capture the student status? [FOOTNOTE 84] 
M (p. 45);

Information Stores: Application Information Stores: Other Benefits:

386. Does the benefit system capture universal data elements [FOOTNOTE 
85] only? M (p. 46);

387. Does the benefit system capture the student status [FOOTNOTE 86] 
of the claimant or dependent(s)? V (p. 46);

Information Stores: Claimant Master Record Information Store:

388. Does the benefit system maintain all applicable mandatory data 
elements [FOOTNOTE 87] specified within the application information 
data stores? M (p. 46);

389. Does the benefit system maintain general information, such as the 
following:

a. case status,

b. benefit type, and:

c. chronology of key dates? M (p. 46);

390. Does the benefit system maintain, as appropriate, award data, such 
as the following:

a. total award,

b. monthly gross payment, and:

c. net monthly payment? M (p. 46);

391. Does the benefit system maintain payment history, such as the 
following:

a. prior disbursements,

b. collections, including principal and interest, and:

c. accruals? M (p. 46);

392. Does the benefit system maintain special collection activity, such 
as the following:

a. delinquent debt collection activity and:

b. status? M (p. 46);

393. Does the benefit system maintain general data, such as demographic 
data other than those specified in the application information stores? 
[FOOTNOTE 88] V (p. 46);

Information Stores: Financial Information Store:

394. Does the benefit system maintain the present interest rate per the 
Department of the Treasury? M (p. 46);

395. Does the benefit system maintain the daily exchange rate for 
relevant [FOOTNOTE 89] currencies? V (p. 47);

Related GAO Products:

These related products address two main categories: internal control 
and financial management systems. We have developed these guidelines 
and tools to assist agencies in improving or maintaining effective 
operations and financial management.

Internal Control:

Maintaining Effective Control Over Employee Time and Attendance 
Reporting. GAO-03-352G. Washington, D.C.: January 2003.

Streamlining the Payment Process While Maintaining Effective Internal 
Control. GAO/AIMD-00-21.3.2. Washington, D.C.: May 2000.

Internal Control Management and Evaluation Tool. GAO-01-1008G. 
Washington, D.C.: August 2001.

Standards for Internal Control in the Federal Government. GAO/AIMD-00-
21.3.1. Washington, D.C.: November 1999.

Determining Performance and Accountability Challenges and High Risks. 
GAO-01-159SP. Washington, D.C.: November 2000.

Financial Management Systems;

Property Management Systems: Requirements Checklist. GAO-02-171G. 
Washington, D.C.: December 2001. Human Resources and Payroll Systems 
Requirements Checklist. GAO/AIMD-00-21.2.3. Washington, D.C.: March 
2000.

Grant Financial System Requirements Checklist. GAO-01-911G. 
Washington, D.C.: September 2001.

System Requirements for Managerial Cost Accounting Checklist. GAO/AIMD-
99-21.2.9. Washington, D.C.: January 1999.

Guaranteed Loan System Requirements Checklist. GAO-01-371G. 
Washington, D.C.: March 2001.

Inventory System Checklist. GAO/AIMD-98-21.2.4. Washington, D.C.: May 
1998.

Seized Property and Forfeited Assets Requirements Checklist. GAO-01-
99G. Washington, D.C.: October 2000.

Framework for Federal Financial Management System Checklist. GAO/AIMD-
98-21.2.1. Washington, D.C.: May 1998.

Travel System Requirements Checklist. GAO/AIMD-00-21.2.8. Washington, 
D.C.: May 2000.

(195019):

FOOTNOTES

[1] JFMIP is a joint undertaking of OMB, GAO, the Department of the 
Treasury, and the Office of Personnel Management (OPM), working in 
cooperation with each other and with operating agencies to improve 
financial management practices throughout the government. The program 
was initiated in 1948 by the Secretary of the Treasury, the Director of 
the Bureau of the Budget (now OMB), and the Comptroller General. JFMIP 
was authorized by the Budget and Accounting Procedures Act of 1950 
(subsequently codified at 31 U.S.C. § 3511 (d)). The Civil Service 
Commission, now the Office of Personnel Management, joined JFMIP in 
1966.

[2] JFMIP has also issued the Framework for Federal Financial 
Management Systems (FFMSR-0, January 1995), which defines the framework 
for establishing and maintaining financial management systems to 
support management and deliver programs of the federal government. GAO 
published a companion checklist, Framework for Federal Financial 
Management System Checklist (GAO/AIMD-98-21.2.1, May 1998).

[3] Thus far, the series includes the (1) System Requirements for 
Managerial Cost Accounting (February 1998) (2) Human Resources and 
Payroll System Requirements (April 1999), (3) Direct Loan System 
Requirements (June 1999), (4) Travel System Requirements (July 1999), 
(5) Seized Property and Forfeited Assets System Requirements (December 
1999), (6) Guaranteed Loan System Requirements (March 2000), (7) Grant 
Financial System Requirements (June 2000), (8) Property Management 
System Requirements (October 2000), (9) Benefit System Requirements 
(September 2001), (10) Core Financial System Requirements (November 
2001), which supercedes the 1999 Core Financial System Requirements 
(February 1999), (11) Acquisitions Financial System Requirements (June 
2002), (12) Revenue System Requirements (January 2003), and (13) 
Inventory, Supplies, and Materials System Requirements (August 2003), 
which supercedes the 1995 Inventory System Requirements (June 1995). 
Functional requirements for budget formulation and insurance claims 
systems have not yet been issued.

[4] Application information stores refers to all data recorded from the 
source document(s) used in determining eligibility as well as the 
status of the review and approval of the application. See questions 333 
through 387.

[5] Unless otherwise indicated, the page number reference is to JFMIP-
SR-01-01.

[6] These are specified in the claims processing section. See questions 
16 through 65.

[7] Approval would result in the establishment of a master record.

[8] The claimant fills in all the required fields.

[9] For example, does it provide for the ability to route claims for 
manual validation?

[10] For example, are data retrievable by query of full name and Social 
Security number (SSN) or taxpayer identification number (TIN)?

[11] The master record must contain all of the mandatory data as 
specified in the requirements under "Claimant Master Record Information 
Store" section of Benefit Systems Requirements (see questions 388 
through 393).

[12] This occurs when the claimant already receives a different type of 
benefit administered by the agency.

[13] This refers to all data recorded from the source document used in 
determining eligibility, and it also includes the status of:

[14] For example, does the system allow for age attainment verification 
to determine whether one is eligible for Social Security Administration 
retirement benefits?

[15] For example, can the system ensure that an applicant has not filed 
for multiple conflicting benefits?

[16] For example, does the system allow the user to record receipt of a 
school certification pertaining to a claimant or dependent child?

[17] For example, can it determine the effective date of a retirement 
claim?

[18] For example, can it determine this using applicant data and 
specific benefit program criteria?

[19] For example, does it use tables that are easily maintained by the 
user?

[20] For example, is military retired pay offset on a dollar-for-dollar 
basis against veterans compensation, and for individuals under age 65, 
are Social Security benefits offset at a predetermined ratio for every 
dollar earned by the claimant above the established threshold amount?

[21] This can also be any other number as required by law or 
regulation.

[22] Overpayment information includes date of occurrence, claimant 
name, and overpayment amount.

[23] For example, does the system maintain information needed for 1099 
reporting, including SSN or TIN? In cases where payments are made to 
third parties who are serving in fiduciary capacities, does the system 
maintain 1099 information for the principal party rather than the 
agent?

[24] Treasury, financial institutions, or other sources may supply 
these updates periodically.

[25] This includes payments, collections, waivers, or offsets resulting 
from overpayments.

[26] Please refer to the previous question.

[27] This includes recording internal allocations or allotments from 
within the agency.

[28] That is, does the system provide the capabilities and controls for 
authorized users to override funds availability edits?

[29] That is, does the system either reject the transaction or provide 
a warning?

[30] At a minimum, does the system capture accounting classification 
elements and estimated amounts?

[31] Some agencies have "delegated disbursing authority" and can print 
checks or make EFTs without using Treasury as an intermediary. 31 
U.S.C. § 3321(b) provides that, for economy and efficiency, the 
Secretary of the Treasury may delegate the authority to disburse public 
money to officers and employees of other executive agencies.

[32] As stated in I TFM 4-10025, the agency must submit immediately to 
the chief disbursing officer any irregularity in accounts involving 
disbursement activity. Furthermore, the agency is responsible for 
resolving any irregularities or discrepancies associated with such 
reports.

[33] See I TFM 4-6020.10. FMS must receive this information within the 
required time frame to carry out its check reconciliation 
responsibilities properly, to decline final payment, or to reclaim 
payment on certain improperly negotiated Treasury checks or counterfeit 
checks. See 31 C.F.R. Part 240.

[34] Under 31 U.S.C. § 3716 (c), an authorized disbursing official is 
allowed to reduce recipient benefits by administrative offset to 
satisfy a creditor agency claim "…certified to the Secretary of the 
Treasury.":

[35] "The head of an executive agency or an officer or employee of an 
executive agency … shall include with each certified voucher submitted 
to a disbursing official pursuant to this section the taxpayer 
identifying number of each person to whom payment may be made under the 
voucher.":

[36] Questions 113 through 136 are applicable only to agencies for 
which Treasury does the actual disbursing.

[37] Emergency situations are defined by the administering agency.

[38] For example, can payments be scheduled or made with ACH or SF-
1166?

[39] Physical media include tape or EFT.

[40] That is, does the system record whether, for example, (1) the 
entire amount is expensed, (2) payables or cash accounts reflect net 
outlay, and (3) budgetary resources are increased by the amount of 
nonfederal receivables collected?

[41] That is, does the system allow for a minimum of one allotment in 
addition to the primary deposit account?

[42] IRS acceptable form would be, for example, hard copy or magnetic 
tape.

[43] For example, IRS 1099s are required for miscellaneous payments of 
over $600 to individuals.

[44] OMB Circular A-129 prescribes policies and procedures for 
justifying, designing, and managing federal credit programs, including 
collecting nontax receivables such as overpayments to beneficiaries.

[45] The method of recovery includes payment, internal offset, TOP, 
compromise settlement, and civil suit.

[46] For example, does the system exclude receivables that are in due 
process status or those that relate to bankruptcy filings?

[47] An offset program participant is the recipient of the amount to be 
offset against a claimant's benefit payments.

[48] For example, receivable management would include establishing a 
receivable, adjusting receivables, collections and offsets, as well as 
waivers and write-offs.

[49] This includes annual, multiyear, and no-year appropriations as 
well as trust funds.

[50] Accounting classification elements include, for example, 
organization level and cost center.

[51] A pseudocode can be used instead of the exact SGL account numbers, 
providing the account descriptions and posting rules are the same as 
those used in the SGL for relevant transactions.

[52] This could include values in tables, such as available funding.

[53] This ensures that counts and amounts in trailer records agree with 
records in the batch.

[54] For example, when expending an existing obligation the balance of 
the open obligation must be automatically reduced by the amount 
expended.

[55] Examples of selection criteria are accounting period, amount, and 
payee.

[56] Of particular significance are data needed when preparing 
actuarial estimates for financial statement preparation in compliance 
with the reporting requirements specified by SFFAS 5 and 17. For 
example, does the system facilitate historical trend analysis of 
various data elements as determined by the agency?

[57] For example, does the system pass the data needed to prepare (1) 
reports required by the Federal Agencies' Centralized Trial Balance 
System (FACTS) I, FACTS II, SF-224 (when appropriate) and (2) financial 
statements to the core financial system?

[58] This includes providing the ability to automatically assign cost 
by a major program to facilitate preparation of the Statement of Net 
Costs in accordance with OMB's Bulletin 01-09, Form and Content of 
Agency Financial Statements.

[59] That is, does the system determine the appropriate amount of 
corresponding U.S. dollars when recording transactions for payments 
made in foreign currency?

[60] Measures should cover agency resources at both the local and 
national levels.

[61] For example, can the system generate reports showing the number of 
individuals receiving benefits by duration (e.g., 1 to 5 years or 6 to 
10 years)?

[62] For example, does the system provide capabilities to notify a 
claimant of decisions affecting payment amount or cessation of 
payments?

[63] For example, could the benefit system automatically update 
detailed claimant information, such as individual payable and 
receivable records, if they were maintained in the core accounting 
system?

[64] These systems include those at the Department of the Treasury's 
FMS and IRS, OMB, and OPM.

[65] Voluntary sources include, for example, returned checks, funeral 
home notification, and next of kin.

[66] Methods for verifying death of a claimant include, for example, 
phone contact, signature verification, or personal contact with next of 
kin.

[67] Surveys would cover the claimant's experience from initial contact 
with the agency to receipt of benefit payment.

[68] These standards address technical and functional performance 
criteria necessary for such technology to comply with section 508 of 
the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, as amended.

[69] 5 U.S.C. § 552A (2000).

[70] The claim holder is the person on whose record the benefit is 
earned or due.

[71] For example, a claimant may be a spouse, child, or dependent 
parent of a claim holder.

[72] This does not necessarily mean marital status (e.g., married, 
single, or exempt).

[73] This facilitates verifying a claimant's identity.

[74] For example, does the system capture whether the claim holder is 
the child or parent of the claimant and vice versa?

[75] This also includes military service when used in determining 
eligibility and the amount of benefits.

[76] For example, does the system capture previous annual wages and 
salary?

[77] Lump sum refers to refund of contributions.

[78] For example, does the system capture whether the annuity selection 
is for self-only, self and reduced survivor, or self and maximum 
survivor?

[79] For example, is the student full-time?

[80] For example, does the system capture military service when used in 
determining eligibility and the amount of benefits?

[81] For example, does the system capture whether the claim holder has 
dependent children or parents?

[82] That is, the claimant is a former spouse.

[83] That is, the claimant is a former spouse.

[84] For example, is the claimant a full-time student?

[85] These are covered in questions 333 through 346.

[86] For example, is the student full-time?

[87] That is, does the system maintain universal data elements and 
appropriate categorical information?

[88] That is, does the system maintain information that has been 
historically used by the agency in preparing actuarial estimates for 
purposes such as forecasting and complying with financial statement 
reporting requirements and SFFAS 5 and 17?

[89] That is, the currencies are specified by the agency. 

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