Feb 23, 2012

New Regs On Recontacting Medical Sources And Dangerous Claimants

     Social Security has posted two separate notice in today's Federal Register. Here's an excerpt from the first:
We are modifying the requirement to recontact your medical source(s) first when we need to resolve an inconsistency or insufficiency in the evidence he or she provided. Depending on the nature of the inconsistency or insufficiency, there may be other, more appropriate sources from whom we could obtain the information we need. By giving adjudicators more flexibility in determining how best to obtain this information, we will be able to make a determination or decision on disability claims more quickly and efficiently in certain situations.
      And from the second:
We are revising our regulations at Sec. Sec. 404.937 and 416.1437 to further describe when the Hearing Office Chief Administrative Law Judge will find a claimant or other individual poses a reasonable threat to the safety of our employees or other participants in the hearing. We are making these changes to respond to public comments we received.


Anonymous said...

This is clearly SSA's first step towards completely removing the recontact regs, since no ALJ I have ever dealt with has EVER recontacted the treating source, and those errors almost always result (at least partially) in a remand. I bet SSA is sick and tired of those remands since they know the ALJs will never actually follow through on the recontacting duty anyway, so why not just eliminate the rule? Or, as in this case, sweeten the pot by saying they can just get a CE in lieu of recontacting the treating source?

Cue the "treating physicians are all liars" hatespeak in 3, 2, 1....

Anonymous said...

they are not all liars. I reviwed a file earlir this week that said "none of xxx's impairments prevent him from working."

Anonymous said...

I have never seen a remand due to failure to recontact, given that the requirement is for the evidence to be ambiguous or insufficient to render a decision. All you have to say is the evidence was not ambiguous or insufficient. Then move on. So this reg was pointless to begin with.