We established this website to comply with the requirements of Executive Order (EO) 13891, “Promoting the Rule of Law Through Improved Agency Guidance.” This website links to all of our documents that might qualify as “guidance documents” under the EO.1
The documents that we issue include Program Operations Manual System (POMS) instructions; the Hearings, Appeals and Litigation Law (HALLEX) manual; Social Security Rulings (SSR); and Acquiescence Rulings. Most of the documents that we issue do not qualify as guidance documents under E.O. 13891; however, some may. We have provided links to our POMS, SSRs, and ARs below to promote transparency. The links below are searchable and indexed.
- POMS: https://secure.ssa.gov/poms.nsf/Home?readform
- SSRs and ARs: https://www.ssa.gov/OP_Home/rulings/rulings.html
Force and Effect of Guidance Documents
Guidance documents lack the force and effect of law, unless expressly authorized by statute or incorporated into a contract. We may not cite, use, or rely on any guidance document that is not posted on this website, except to establish historical facts.
How to Request Withdrawal or Modification of Existing Guidance Documents
You may ask us to consider withdrawing or modifying an existing guidance document by contacting our Office of Legislation and Congressional Affairs at Regulations@ssa.gov or 3100 West High Rise, 6401 Security Boulevard, Baltimore, Maryland 21235-6401. Please note that we will consider your request and we may decide not to withdraw or modify our document.
Submitting Public Comments on Significant Guidance Documents
We will make available here any significant guidance documents about which we are accepting public comments.
There are no such documents available at this time.
For additional resources related to our program rules, see https://www.ssa.gov/regulations/ Please note that most of the documents that are available from that website do not qualify as “guidance documents” under EO 13891.
Notice Announcing Guidance Website
To view the notice announcing our Guidance Document Portal, see https://www.federalregister.gov/documents/2020/03/02/2020-04177/announcing-our-guidance-document-portal.
Agency Guidance Regulation
To view our regulation on agency guidance documents, see https://www.federalregister.gov/documents/2020/08/20/2020-17878/improved-agency-guidance-documents.
1Not all of the documents accessible from the links provided on this site meet EO 13891’s definition of guidance. The links provide access to documents that do not meet this definition.