Apr 20, 2015

How Do You Answer The Question?

     From a section added to Social Security's HALLEX manual last week:
Before closing the hearing, the administrative law judge (ALJ) will remind the claimant that he or she must inform the ALJ about or submit, in its entirety, all evidence known to him or her that relates to whether he or she is blind or disabled. See 20 CFR 404.1512 and 416.912. If the claimant has a representative, then the ALJ will remind the representative that he or she must help the claimant obtain the information that the claimant must submit. See 20 CFR 404.1512, 404.1740, 416.912, and 416.1540. The ALJ must ask the claimant and the representative if they are aware of any additional evidence that relates to whether the claimant is blind or disabled.


Anonymous said...

easy. if you know of med evidence that is out there, you tell us. if you lie, it will be held against you as a credibility factor

Anonymous said...

the days of hiding the dr. reports that call out the claimant as a malingerer or the MSS which limit the claimant to medium work are over.

Anonymous said...

Just answer honestly.

"As of this moment, there is no additional information available."


"Possibly. I requested records from...(blank)...several times but have not received them to date."

Anonymous said...

@ 8:45 - new reg is not limited to medical or even relevant evidence, so no, those answers are not sufficient.

@ 8:46, lmao, good one, right. To the very limited extent this happens (or makes any difference in the outcome of the claim), this will do next to nothing to end the practice.

Another dub rule. What is the point? In reality if the rep says no, and then the agency discovers that there is an irrelevant OB-GYN visit that wasn't in the record, is the agency going to rehear the case? Punish the claimant (how)?

In real life this will only lead to remands where the ALJ forgets to ask.

Anonymous said...

There are multiple possible ways around this: The claimant has the right to contact providers and limit the scope of records sent or decline to allow records to be sent altogether. A competent attorney can easily argue various or specific records do not relate to impairments (eg; ob-gyn, dermatology, etc) therefore are not relevant. Where things can get dicey if when records mention other medical sources, thereby opening the door of doubt or credibility, or if the claimant does his own ADLs, or even worse, speaks to an adjudicator or hearings staffer and mentions additional providers and the attorney has not reviewed the ADLs or the claimant doesn't inform the attorney of the their interactions, thinking they were no big deal. A representative's staff has to be thorough, period.