Since 1945, the agency has provided the service to help third-parties find “missing” individuals in order to communicate monetary or humanitarian information. The SSA will stop the letter-forwarding service on or around May 17.
The agency explains that since the Internet now offers numerous locator solutions through free social media websites and for-pay locator service providers, the public can now reliably locate people without the agency’s forwarding service. The agency also noted the letter-forwarding service is not a program-related activity under the Social Security Act.
The Internal Revenue Service discontinued its own letter-forwarding service in August 2012 for similar reasons (see “IRS Stops Forwarding Letters for Missing Participants”).
For more information, contact Esset Tate by mail at the Office of Public Service and Operations Support, Social Security Administration, 6401 Security Boulevard, Baltimore, Maryland 21235-6401, or by phone at 410-966-8502.
The announcement from the SSA is here.