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Tucson Social Security Disability Blog

Social Security Proposes To Take Away All In-Person Hearings

Posted by John Kuhnlein | Jan 31, 2019 | 0 Comments

Though I would not put much past the Social Security Administration (SSA), this one is sort of shocking. SSA has proposed taking away the rights of Social Security disability benefits claimants to object to a video hearing.  Under the proposed rule, SSA would set the time and place for the hearing

The Judge Will See You Now

without any input from the claimant or her attorney.  Apparently, a claimant would just get a notice one day to show up somewhere to face a judge from who-knows-where on a video screen.

Due Process Rights Denied

At present, a Social Security disability claimant can object to having his case heard via video. If the claimant objects, her case is heard by an in-person judge. This is reasonable and it comports with claimant's due process rights. SSA's proposed system would strip

You Thought We Were Serious?

Social Security disability claimants of their due process rights and force the Social Security disability claimant to go where she is told.

Get As Many Denials As Possible

This is profoundly wrong.  In addition to taking away due process rights guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution, it unfairly shifts the power balance between claimants and SSA. They could assign cases to judges by age, sex, type of medical problems or any other criteria. The goal here would be obvious: to promote as many denials as possible.

Shuttering Offices To Improve Service?

Why would Social Security even propose such a terrible idea? Apparently, they want to shut down local hearing offices and concentrate all their Administrative Law Judges (ALJ's) into a few regional centers. The ALJ's in these regional offices would have no connection to where the claimants live. The

Gone Fishing?

ALJ's would not know the good doctors from the poor ones, for example, in any given region. These ALJs would have no feel for the local economy nor what kind of work the people in these locales do.

A Broken Bond Of Cooperation

A major reason why the Social Security disability process works at all is due to the cooperation between the ALJ's and the local Social Security lawyers.  The two cooperate to work up cases before the hearings.  If that bond is broken and the ALJs and the lawyers appearing before them have no trust and good faith, watch out. Things will turn ugly fast.

Object To This Change While You Can

If you agree that this is a very stupid idea, let SSA know. Go to this website and search for this awful

You Want To Do What?

regulation. Then let SSA know you disapprove. It might be the only chance to stop a truly idiotic idea from becoming law.

About the Author

John Kuhnlein

Since 1992, I have been helping the people of Southern Arizona get the benefits they are due. Before devoting all my efforts to assisting people with Social Security disability claims, I also handled such complex lawsuits as medical malpractice and products liability. I brought to my Social Security cases all the skills and attention to detail that I developed in the courtroom. I approach each Social Security disability case as if it were a million-dollar lawsuit. For the people trying to get Social Security benefits, their claim is every bit as important. Because I have personally handled so many Social Security cases, I have refined the skills I need to win your case for you. I have helped people win cases for every kind of ailment from arthritis to valley fever. At present, I am focused on helping those persons with neurological and orthopedic disorders. Because claims for people over age fifty bring additional complications, I particularly seek out those cases to work on. I regularly write about back and spine conditions on my blog. I actively seek out the latest information about orthopedic and neurological disorders to ensure I can represent my clients as effectively as possible. Because of my current focus, I regret that I am not able to take any cases for mental disorders. If you are over age fifty and suffer from any orthopedic or neurological disorder, please contact me at once.


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John Kuhnlein has been assisting people with Social Security disability claims for the past 25+ years.

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