An Office of Central Operations is a data processing center maintained by the Social Security Administration. The SSA maintains two such offices, with one Office of Central Operations in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania; and the other in Salinas, California. There is also an affiliated data processing center located in Baltimore, Maryland.
The primary responsibilities handled by the Office of Central Operations include maintainng and establishing the necessary records used in making decisions on Social Security Disability claims and appeals. The data compiled by the Office of Central Operations is used to help determine whether a Social Security Disability claim should be approved or denied. It is also used to determine if any changes should be made to Social Security Disability benefits; including raising, lowering, continuing or stopping.
The Office of Central Operations often helps with the collection of Social Security Disability benefits that have been overpaid. You can expect them to contact you if you have received Social Security Disability benefits to which you were not entitled. In such cases, you will receive a notice regarding how much you were overpaid, giving you some options regarding how you can take care of the matter.
While it is not within their primary responsibilities, an Office of Central Operations may also help process Social Security Disability hearing findings. This typically happens when the case load being handled by Administrative Law Judges is beyond what the Office of Disability Adjudication can handle in a timely manner.
In most cases, Social Security Disability claimants will not need to deal directly with the Office of Central Operations other than sending earnings statements or when arranging to repay overpayments. Should you find yourself in the position of needing to deal with the Office of Central Operations, you should consider contracting a Social Security Disability attorney who is experienced in negotiating the red tape of the Social Security Administration.