Jun 20, 2015

Representation Crisis In Kentucky

     If you thought all those former clients of Eric Conn whose Social Security disability benefits are being cut off can just go to Legal Aid for representation, think again. Legal Aid doesn't have anything like the resources. It might be interesting if hundreds of law students were turned loose on these cases.


Dan Smith said...

If the problem is finding reps who are both local and willing to work pro bono, maybe they could expand their options by using reps throughout the country. Hear me out. POMS 33025.085 allows hearings conducted by telephone in certain circumstances. Would that allow a representative to appear via telephone while the rest of the hearing participants attended in-person? Obviously that's not a great option, but might be the best one available.

Personally, i wouldnt mind helping out some of these claimants given a few conditions:

1) i wouldn't need to travel
2) the existing medical record from the time of adjudication is available on ERE (this might not be the case considering how far back some of these cases stretch)
3) the claimant would take responsibility for obtaining their own medical records (Kentucky has a law entitling patients to a free copy of their charts).


Anonymous said...

Conn has not been banned from representing claimants, so they should demand that he or one of his minions represent them now.

Anonymous said...

"the claimant would take responsibility for obtaining their own medical records (Kentucky has a law entitling patients to a free copy of their charts)."

So the (possibly already disabled) claimant does the actual work of updating the record and you can put in a token appearance at the hearing. With 'representation' like that they'd be better off with the law students.

Dan Smith said...

To be clear, i'm talking about pro bono representation.
I don't think its unreasonable to ask a claimant to get their own records given those circumstances.
I also don't think you'll find many reps willing to help if doing so involves substantial administrative work.

Johnny Cash said...

Pro bono does not equal half-assed.

Anonymous said...

True, half-assed applies to at least half of the paid Representatives also.

Anonymous said...

Wow. Just wow. No good deed goes unpunished. Perhaps our troll friend would like to work for free for a while and tell us how it should be done. Be careful up there on you pedestal looking down on everyone, it is a long fall with a sudden stop at the end.

Anonymous said...

Yes give Dan a break. All he was saying is that he would be willing to donate his time to help some of these folks out pro bono but that he doesn't want to travel at his own expense and thought that they could get a copy of their medical records for free. Perfectly reasonable.

Anonymous said...

Under KY law only the first copy do med records is free; subsequent copies will generally cost $1 per page. Conn allegedly destroyed the files so there will be cost involved to resubmit evidence. I think the law student idea is good; when I was a young lawyer I made up for lack of experience with extra time spent on research and preparation. It would also expose the students to public service.

Dan Smith said...

Wouldn't there be two copies of the file out there though? One in Conn's possession and one in SSA/ODAR's?

My thinking is that most relevant records were probably collected by DDS at the time of IA. Conn MAYBE obtained some records that span from the IA denial to the FF. probably no more than a year.

So there's probably three categories of records:
1) records from IA (should still be with SSA)
2) records from Conn (should've been submitted and this also should still be with SSA)
3) records from after FF but before DLI (we're never ordered and this should be free).

Sounds like an easy problem to me but I might be misinformed.

PS: thanks to the cavalry haha