Navigate this Section
Every year, administrative burdens make it harder for millions of individuals, families, and small businesses to receive government benefits and services for which they may be eligible. For some individuals, families or small businesses, these burdens—costs like the “time tax” required to learn about a program, fill out paperwork, assemble required documents, and schedule visits to government offices—completely prevent access to much-needed benefits. Others may succeed in accessing benefits, but pay a heavy cost through lost time, additional stress, stigma, or more.
The Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (OIRA) is working to fix this. In April 2022, OIRA launched an initiative to work with Federal agencies to (1) more accurately estimate all of the different burdens faced by the public when attempting to access public benefits and services and (2) reduce those burdens. Since then, OIRA and Federal agencies have been working together to identify and implement burden reduction opportunities through regulations and changes to forms. OIRA has also fostered the sharing of leading practices, lessons, and tools for reducing burdens across the Federal government.
You can read more about OIRA’s burden reduction initiative below.
Burden Reduction Report
In July 2023, OIRA published this progress report on the burden reduction initiative, summarizing over 100 initiatives from 20 agencies and providing in-depth case studies of various burden reduction efforts, including their impact on individuals, families, and small businesses.
- 2023 Burden Reduction Report, “Tackling the Time Tax: How the Federal Government Is Reducing Burdens to Accessing Critical Benefits and Services”
- “Reducing Time Taxes and Administrative Burdens,” Blog Post by Sam Berger, OIRA Associate Administrator
- Burden Reduction Case Studies
- Department of Agriculture – Farm Service Agency Loan Applications
- Department of Education – Evolution of Total and Permanent Disability Debt Discharge
- Department of Homeland Security – 20 Million Hour Burden Reduction Target
- Department of Housing and Urban Development – Streamlining Housing Program Eligibility
- Department of Labor – Unemployment Insurance Applications
- Social Security Administration – Continuing Disability Review
Memorandum and Guidance
- “Strategies for Reducing Administrative Burden in Public Benefit and Service Programs.” In December 2022, OIRA published this memorandum to Federal agencies detailing evidence-informed strategies that agencies might use to reduce burdens in accessing public benefits and services.
- “Improving Access to Public Benefits Programs Through the Paperwork Reduction Act.” In April 2022, OIRA published this Federal government-wide guidance to agencies launching the burden reduction initiative (Office of Management and Budget Memorandum M-22-10).