With recent cuts to the Social Security Administration's budget, plans that were in progress to open new Social Security Disability appeal sites were understandably put on hold. However, putting the construction of new sites on hold was not enough to address the financial issues that the Social Security budget cuts have caused. Some of the existing Social Security Disability hearing sites have had to be closed to help the SSA address its current financial crisis.
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The economy has suffered some serious blows in recent years, and while it may be coming back, the after-effects are still being felt across the nation. Millions of people are unemployed and many of them have used up all of their unemployment benefits. As a result, lawmakers are worried that the Social Security Disability program will be fraudulently used as an extension for expired unemployment payments. To support this theory, focus has been put on a single judge who has had a 100% award rate over the past six months.
With all of the focus lately on Judge Daugherty's high disability approval rates and the SSA's outcry against the low percentage of claims that he actually denies, one must ask whether there is too much scrutiny being placed on the judge. After all, no one is scrutinizing the judges with abnormally high denial rates. How can one end of the spectrum be criticized without an investigation of the other?
The rumor mill is ablaze and many people are asking whether or not Social Security and Medicare are really in as much trouble as people are predicting. We all knew that the Social Security and Medicare programs were in desperate need of reform, but are they really losing funds faster than anticipated and are the benefits that recipients are currently receiving really at stake? While Social Security checks will not be stopping anytime soon, the outlook is definitely concerning.
The Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) arguably has more subjective power than any other link in the Social Security Disability chain. The system is intentionally designed to allow ALJs a broader ability to use their own judgment during Social Security Disability hearings than other SSA adjudicators. ALJs typically use the HALLEX as a basis for their decisions.
When most people imagine a case of Social Security Disability fraud, the think of individuals who are completely capable of working trying to obtain Social Security Disability benefits in spite of their physical health. In truth, there are many different facets of disability fraud, as a recent case in North Oaks, Minnesota has proven.
The age of technology has arrived and more companies are going paperless than ever, including the Social Security Administration.
What does the SSA's shift towards paperless payments mean for Social Security Disability beneficiaries?
Many wonder exactly what changes are being made and how those changes will affect them on a personal level. The following information will help you understand how the change to paperless payments will affect your monthly Social Security Disability benefits.
Recently, a 32-year old Kansas City man named Tyrone Holman was charged with obstructing the federal proceedings of his SSI application process. Holmes left threatening messages in the voicemail box of his assigned psychologist, whom he had been scheduled to meet for a required psychological evaluation. He ranted that his murder of his brother in 2006 was actually the psychologist’s fault because Holmes had previously not been found eligible for Social Security Disability benefits, and threatened legal action, demanding compensation for his years spent in prison.
In January of this year, the Lockheed Martin Corporation was officially contracted to deliver the Social Security Administration a $2 Million disability case processing system. This high-profile project that is slated for the next six years is expected to vastly improve the volume, speed, and accuracy of cases the SSA is able to process on a regular basis, as well as provide one nationwide, integrated system to handle all of the processing functions for disability claims.