May 31, 2006
New HALLEX On Bench Decisions
Supreme Court Denies Cert
Supervisory RO Position Advertised
Access To Social Security's Computers
May 30, 2006
Will Lockhart Step Down at SSA Upon Confirmation at OFHEO?
Deputy Chief Federal Reviewing Official Job Advertised
The Deputy Chief Federal Reviewing Official serves as full deputy and "alter ego" to the Chief Federal Reviewing Official (Associate Commissioner, Office of the Federal Reviewing Official) and is responsible and accountable for the overall program management, direction, planning, objectives, policy-making, and coordination of the Office of the Federal Reviewing Official. Assumes full responsibility for operations in the absence of the Chief Federal Reviewing Official and acts on all matters with full authority of commitment within assigned jurisdiction.
New Drug For Hepatitis C
Viropharma has announced an experimental drug that it says cut Hepatitis C viral levels by 97% in only 14 days. Only a small scale human study has been done so far. If this holds up, it would be a major public health development and could prevent a big rise in Social Security disability costs.
May 26, 2006
Tremolite Ruling Issued
May 25, 2006
Gerry Promises Tremolite Change
Update: A ruling on this subject is scheduled for publication on Friday, May 26.
Veterans Disability Benefits Commission Votes Down Social Security Offset
... such as waivers if a veteran has less than six quarters of SSDI eligibility, or possibly to expedite reviews for veterans already service-connected by VA or for those medically retired from the military. Other key considerations would be to understand the effects on quality of life for disabled veterans and to understand utilization rates of SSDI by veterans.
SSA Receives Award
May 24, 2006
SSA Official Plans To Be Doubledipper
Lockhart has already been critical of the compensation paid to executives at Fannie Mae, one of the federal housing corporations that he is now overseeing. Those executives were granted enormous bonuses based upon fraudulent accounting. Lockhart is quoted in the Washington Post as saying that "You could argue none of it [bonuses paid to Fannie Mae executives] was deserved."
Lockhart's dual role could cause serious problems for OFHEO and SSA if something happens to Jo Anne Barnhart, the Commissioner of Social Security, since Lockhart would then become the acting head of Social Security as well as OFHEO.
May 23, 2006
Social Security History Preserved
May 22, 2006
"Special" Medical-Vocational Profiles
I. A finding of “disabled” will be made for persons who:
are not working at SGA level, and
have a history of 35 years or more of arduous unskilled work, and
can no longer perform this past arduous work because of a severe impairment(s), and
have no more than a marginal education.
NOTE: This provision would not necessarily be defeated by very short periods of semi-skilled or skilled work if no transferable skills exist or by longer periods of semi-skilled or skilled work if it is clear that the skill acquired is not readily transferable to lighter work and makes no meaningful contribution to an individual’s ability to do any work within his or her present functional capacity.
II. A finding of “disabled” will be made for persons who:
III. A finding of “disabled” will be made for persons who:
have a severe impairment(s), and
have no past relevant work (PRW), and
are age 55 or older, and
have no more than a limited education.
NOTE: To satisfy the requirement for this profile, the 30 years of lifetime commitment work does not have to be at one job or for one employer but rather work in one field of a very similar nature. If the person has a history of working 30 years or more in one field of work, the use of this profile will not be precluded by the fact that the person also has work experience in other fields, so long as that work experience in other fields is not past relevant work which the person is still able to perform.
are not working at SGA level, and
have a lifetime commitment (30 years or more) to a field of work that is unskilled, or is skilled or semi-skilled but with no transferable skills, and
can no longer perform this past work because of a severe impairment(s), and
are closely approaching retirement age (age 60 or older), and
have no more than a limited education.
May 21, 2006
Retrieving Old Folders at SSA
May 20, 2006
Empire Law Center Newsletter
May 19, 2006
Automated Phone Calls to Claimants With Hearings
Four out of 10 retired workers left their jobs sooner than they had planned, usually because of health problems or the loss of employment, according to the report by McKinsey & Co., which was based on a national survey of 3,086 people.
The survey also found that 45 percent of people who are currently employed planned to keep working past age 65. But among the retirees polled, only 13 percent said they had done so.
May 18, 2006
Kingsport, TN Woman Charged
Can We Afford Social Security When Baby Boomers Retire?
|Location|| National Press Club, First Amendment Lounge |
(529 14th Street, NW, 13th Floor, Washington, DC)
|Fee|| Free Event |
Policy makers and policy advisors are busy examining ways to address national concerns about the United States' aging population. How are current retirees faring? What are the latest trends in private pensions and savings? Can we afford Social Security when baby boomers retire?
You are invited to join the National Academy of Social Insurance for this important update on issues affecting all Americans. Come prepared to ask questions. Ample time will be set aside for discussion.
Luisa Grillo-Chope, National Council of La Raza
New Findings: Income of Americans 65 and Older
Debra Whitman, Congressional Research Service
Developments in Pensions and Savings
William Arnone, Ernst and Young
Can We Afford Social Security When Baby Boomers Retire?
Virginia Reno, National Academy of Social Insurance
Stephen Goss, Chief Actuary of Social Security
Margaret Simms, Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies
David John, Heritage Foundation
William Spriggs, Howard University
Signature Proxy Extends to Appeals
May 17, 2006
New ALJ Register On The Way?
OPM is presently completing work on the new ALJ exam [the "exam" for ALJs is mostly a review of the application]. Although the opening date will depend entirely upon the issuance of newly proposed ALJ regulations, OPM is committed to rolling out the new exam expeditiously once the revised regulations become effective. When a new register is generated from the new exam, the current register will be terminated. When the new exam comes out, OPM also plans to take advantage of our state-of-the-art examining technology, USA Staffing, which allows applicants to apply on-line.
We are making great progress in developing the revised regulations referenced above. In December 2005, OPM posted a proposed rule to revise the ALJ program. The proposed rule removed redundant procedures and outdated information, clarified bar membership requirements, and provided for the ALJ examination process to be established in a manner similar to other OPM examinations. The proposed rule was open for public comment for 60 days. In conjunction with publishing these proposed regulations, OPM also posted a new ALJ qualification standard on its Web site. The ALJ qualification standard was also open for public comment for a 60-day period. At this time, OPM is carefully considering the comments submitted on both the proposed rule and ALJ qualification standard
Inspector General Report on SSI Termination Overpayments
A few questions come to mind in reading this study. Why was the OIG doing a study of this to begin with? Congress made a value judgment that the fair thing to do for the desperately poor people who receive SSI was to not cut off their monthly checks until the appeal process was finished. Is the Inspector General producing the report in an effort to get the statute changed? What is the purpose of the report otherwise? Is this an appropriate use of OIG funds? OIG attempted to add a little something to suggest that there is some issue other than the statute by saying that the overpayments would not have been as great if SSA could process these cases more quickly. That is true, but there is no mention in the report of the terrible staffing shortages at SSA that delay everything the agency does, including SSI terminations. Although OIG constantly criticizes delays and mistakes at SSA, there is never a mention in OIG reports of the severe constraints imposed upon SSA because its staff has been cut dramatically over the last twenty-five years while SSA's workload has increased dramatically. Perhaps SSA's staffing shortages are not so apparent at OIG, which seems to be flush with money and personnel.
Baltimore Man Sentenced For Social Security Fraud
Social Security Advisory Board Meeting Agenda
9:15 a.m. - 10:45 a.m. Steve Goss, Chief Actuary, Social Security Administration
10:45 a.m. - 11:15 a.m. Clare McFarland, Deputy Director, Office of Medicare and Medicaid Cost Estimates Group
1:45p.m. - 3:30 p.m. Kelly Croft, Chief Quality Officer, Social Security Administration
New Regulations on Civil Monetary Penalties
... implement amendments to section 1129 of the Social Security Act (42 U.S.C. 1320a–8) to provide for the imposition of civil monetary penalties and/or assessments: against representative payees who convert Social Security benefits for a use other than for the use or benefit of the beneficiary; against those who withhold disclosure of material statements to SSA; and, against those who make false or misleading statements or representations or omissions of material fact with respect to benefits or payments under title VIII of the Social Security Act.
The regulations had been criticized by the National Organization of Social Security Claimants Representatives (NOSSCR) as overly broad, but were adopted with only minor changes.
May 16, 2006
New Regs on PASS
SSA Tries to Drum Up Interest in Ticket To Work
May 15, 2006
The Final Day
May 14, 2006
Monthly Social Security Stats and More
May 13, 2006
Most Popular Baby Names
May 12, 2006
New ALJs at Social Security
- Mayaguez, PR McNamee-Alemany, John
- San Juan, PR Grippo, Theodore
- Ponce, PR Colon, Rafael
- San Juan, PR Lebron, Roberto
- Albany, NY Pickett, John
- Buffalo, NY Trost, Timothy
- Brooklyn, NY Weinberg, Maryellen
- Newark, NJ Ferrie, Brian
- Newark, NJ Krappa, Donna
- Pittsburg, PA Cohen, Douglas
- Birmingham, AL Lang, jerry
- Florence, SC Digby, Patrick
- Greenville, SC Swank, Drew
- Charlotte, NC Jacobson, Todd
- Charlotte, NC Hicks, Clinton
- Atlanta, GA Auerbach, Larry
- Atlanta, GA Cornick, Karen
- Nashville, TN Graves, Carmen
- Jackson, MS Schwartz, Phillip declined
- Tupelo, MS Fraiser, John
- Kingsport, TN Schwartzberg, Sherman
- Jackson, MS Rose, Deborah
- Tupelo, MS Davis, Harold
- Evansville, IN Jacobs, George
- Ft. Wayne, IN Miller, Terry
- Detroit, MI D’Amato, Donald
- Detroit, MI Roulhac, Roy
- Columbus, OH Shailer, John
- Evansville, IN Vaughn, Jacqueline
- Peoria, IL Jordan, Alice
- Milwaukee, WI Dombai, Les Nicholas
- Lansing, MI Matulewicz, Dennis
- Detroit, MI Neumann, David
- Flint, MI Fina, Joel
- Milwaukee, WI Moore, Ayrie
- Albuquerque, NM Willner, Israel
- Dallas, TX Shilling, Ralph
- Shreveport, LA Haigler, Dave
- Shreveport, LA Rodriguez, Leslie John
- Kansas city, MO Cooke, Christine
- Wichita, KS Werre, Edmund
- Wichita, KS Burbank, Robert
- Seattle, WA Sampson, Victor
Ticket to Work Newsletter
May 11, 2006
Barnhart Statement to Social Security Subcommittee
Watch Barnhart's Testimony Live
Ticket to Work Meeting
May 10, 2006
Senate Votes $38 Million Extra for SSA
Inconsistency Between ALJs
Veterans Disability Benefits Commission Studies Offsetting Social Security Disability Benefits
May 9, 2006
A Question About Part D
Social Security Financing Problem Disputed
May 8, 2006
Reviewing Official Job Advertised
May 7, 2006
Medicare Part D Implementation at SSA
May 6, 2006
Fee Payments Down In April
| || || |
May 5, 2006
Social Security Extends Digestive Listings
Social Security Subcommittee Hearing
Despite growing workloads and a number of service delivery challenges, including assisting the victims of the Gulf Coast hurricanes, the employees of the Social Security Administration press on, doing everything they can to effectively serve our Nation’s seniors, individuals with disabilities, and their families. The costs of providing these services are paid for by the hard-earned wages of American workers, and these workers expect and deserve responsive service. This hearing will highlight the degree to which that service is achieved, and at what cost.
May 4, 2006
NADR Referral Service
May 3, 2006
Atlanta Regional Commissioner Receives Award
May 2, 2006
More Litigation on Budget Reconciliation
May 1, 2006
Social Security Trustees Report For 2005
Status of Disability Service Improvement Plan
Upcoming Meetings and CLE
- May 5, 2006 Cincinnati Bar Social Security Committee CLE, Cincinnati, OH
- May 16-19, 2006 National Association of Disability Examiners Meeting, Virginia Beach, VA
- May 16-19, 2006 National Association of Disability Examiners (NADE) Meeting, Jackson, MS
- May 17, 2006 Indiana CLE Forum, Indianapolis, IN
- May 17, 2006, Social Security Advisory Board Meeting, Washington, DC
- May 19-20, 2006 Stetson University CLE, Tampa, FL
- July 14, 2006 Minnesota Legal Services Coalition CLE, Somewhere in Minnesota, but the sponsor did not bother to give the information
- July 18, 2006 ATLA Social Security Disability Section and Health Care and Disability Litigation Group CLE program, Seattle, WA
- August 10-11, 2006 Retirement Research Consortium, Washington, DC
- August 11, 2006 8th Circuit Social Security CLE, Omaha, NE
- September 16-21, 2006 National Association of Disability Examiners, San Diego, CA
- October 11-14, 2006 National Organization of Social Security Claimants Representatives (NOSSCR) CLE, Phoenix, AZ
- October 16-19, 2006 National Council of Social Security Management Association Meeting, Milwaukee, WI
- May 20-23, 2007, National Association of Disability Examiners Meeting, Stowe, VE