The Office of Management and Budget (OMB) has approved the following change in Social Security's regulations:
Expect to see this in the Federal Register soon. I have no doubt that clearing this is a response to today's Congressional hearing. This has zero to do with the subject of the hearing but doing something anti-claimant must just feel right to Social Security and OMB in this climate.We will revise our rules to protect the integrity of our programs and to address public concerns regarding the removal of an administrative law judge's name from the Notice of Hearing and other prehearing notices. To accomplish both objectives, these final rules state that we will provide an individual with notice that his or her hearing may be held by video teleconferencing and that he or she has an opportunity to object to appearing by video teleconferencing within 30 days of the notice. We have also made changes that allow us to determine that claimant will appear via video teleconferencing if a claimant changes residences while his or her request for hearing is pending. We anticipate these changes will increase the integrity of our programs with minimal impact on the public and result in more efficient administration of our program.