Law Firm Blog


Presumptive Disability Payments

If you are an SSI applicant with one of about 15 severe physical or intellectual impairments, in certain situations, the Social Security Administration (SSA) is willing to pay benefits while gathering the evidence needed to make a decision on your Social Security Disability claim. This is called Presumptive Disability (PD). The “presumptive disability program,” doesn't speed the decision making process, but does pay up to six months of benefits while an applicant is waiting for a disability deterination.
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Vocational Experts Explained

An Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) usually requests a Vocational Expert (VE) to testify either in person, by phone, by video, or by responding to written interrogatories at a Social Security disability hearing. A vocational expert plays a important role in a disability hearing as they provide unbiased information and impartial opinion and concerning...
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Consultative Exams Explained

A Consultative Exam (CE) is medical examination (physical and/or psychological) with a licensed physician selected by the Social Security Administration (SSA). They are not for the purpose of receiving medical treatment. And the examining doctor will not give an opinion as to whether you should receive disability benefits. The CE doctor is contracted to give a one-time evaluation of claimants and document and report the findings.

Contrary to popular thought, CE doctors are not Social Security employees. Rather, they are independent contractors, typically in private practice, who are giving a expert opinion about your conditions and reporting on what you may tell them.
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Long Wait Time for a Hearing Before a Social Security Administrative Law Judge

According to a Washington Post article, approximately 1.1 million disability claimants wait for one of some 1,600 Social Security administrative law judges to decide whether they will receive benefits. The length of time people must wait for a disposition increased from a national average of 12 months in 2012 to a record high of 19 months in 2017. In the Hudson Valley, as of June 2019, the wait is about 14 months.
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Hearing by Video Conference

Claimants have the right to choose whether to have their hearing before an Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) in person or by video conference. In the Hudson Valley, in the past year, 1855 occured by video and 1335 live in-person. While the format of the hearing will be the same, there are advantages and disadvantages to both options.
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