Because they closed their offices, Social Security has altered the manner in which they conduct disability hearings. For the foreseeable future, all such hearings will be done via telephone. The plan is to have each
participant be in his or her own location. Social Security will connect all the calls and the hearing will proceed.
An Offer You Can Refuse
If Social Security calls to offer you a telephonic hearing, you have the right to refuse. If you do, though, they will take you off the calendar and put you back on the slush pile. When you will get off that pile and back before a judge, no one knows. Count on it being many months.
Are You Positioned To Wait?
Unless there is something about your physical appearance that makes a visual presentation critical, it probably makes sense to proceed with a telephonic hearing. On the other hand, if you are financially stable and have health insurance and can wait to see a judge person, that might be the better option.
Two Ways This Could Go
As for the telephonic hearings, I can see two possible effects. It may be that Social Security disability judges are
more sympathetic in plague times. But, it is also far easier to deny a claimant you are not literally facing. Think how easy it is to just hang up on a telemarketer. No social niceties are required.
Have you had a telephonic Social Security disability hearing? How did it go? Let me know.