Today, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) will publish a supplemental final rule , which sets out employer obligations after receiving a “no-match” letter. These letters are sent by the Social Security Administration (SSA) , which is responsible for processing W-2 wage and tax statements submitted by employers on an annual basis. If the combination of name and social security number on the W-2 cannot be matched to an SSA record, the SSA will attempt to resolve it by sending these “no-match” letters to employees, employers and self-employed individuals to inform them of the discrepancy. There could be any number of benign reasons why the W-2 information may not match SSA records, including typographical mistakes, unreported name changes, or inaccurate or incomplete employer records. A no-match letter could also indicate a misrepresentation or improper use of the SSN, which has given rise to this DHS rule and its 2007 predecessor.
Implementation of the rule was previously challenged in federal court last year, leading to a suspension of no-match letters until the suit can be decided. At this time, it’s unclear what effect this new supplemental rule will have on the pending federal lawsuit, although it appears from court documents that the parties to the litigation will meet soon to discuss whether their issues have been addressed by this supplemental rule.