Jun 1, 2006

Feedback on Tremolite

Mike Bliven of Montana disagreed with my suggestion that Social Security Ruling 06-01p on diseases associated with tremolite exposure would be of little consequence:

While I have great respect for you and your work in the field, I respectfully disagree with your blog of today’s date on SSR 06-01. I could not post a response to your blog, so I am sending you this email. While not a magic bullet, this SSR will be helpful to the Montana tremolite victims in their claims – or at least as helpful as any SSR could be. The SSA must still apply it and comply with the Regulations. I know because I represent many of these claimants. This SSR took into account input from the victims of the tremolite exposure, including Montana victims, their treating physicians and other sources, with much effort on the part of Senator Baucus and his staff who work on Social Security issues. The Commissioner’s recent “unpublicized” changes to the regulations, will not go into effect in this part of the country for years and I question how they would help these folks – with the exception of possibly speeding up part of the process by eliminating Reconsideration (which is a meaningless delay here for 87% of applicants). This SSR is in effect now and will be of immediate assistance in the consideration of the claims to those whom it applies if it is followed by Montana DDS, ALJs, and the Appeals Council (or whatever it becomes while it remains).

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