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Disability Law News - March 2016


 

Articles in this Issue

Federal Courts Implement Changes for Handling Social Security Cases
March 28, 2016
Remember back to law school days and learning in Civil Procedure class the essential elements for commencing a civil action, including filing and serving a complaint? Now forget most of those rules if you practice Social Security law in federal court. Read More

Long Time DAP Advocate Moves On
March 28, 2016
On February 5th, the Western New York DAP Task Force celebrated Alan Block. Alan began his career in legal services at North Country Legal Services. He has been with Neighborhood Legal Services (NLS) in Buffalo since DAP’s inception in 1984. Read More

2016 Partnership Conference Planning Underway
March 28, 2016
We are happy to announce that the New York State Bar Association will sponsor the 2016 Partnership Conference, which will take place Wednesday September 14 through Friday September 16 at the Marriott Hotel in Albany. Read More

GAO Makes CDR Recommendations
March 28, 2016
The Government Accountability Office (GAO) has released a report detailing how the Social Security Administration (SSA) could increase savings by refining its selection of cases for continuing disability reviews (CDRs). Read More

Two New Fraud SSRs Published
March 28, 2016
On March 14, 2016, the Social Security Administration (SSA) issued two Social Security Rulings (SSRs). Read More

SSR 16-3p Evaluates Symptoms, Not Credibility
March 28, 2016
On March 16, 2016, the Social Security Administration (SSA) published SSR 16-3p – Evaluation of Symptoms in Disability Claims. Read More

HALLEX Provisions Added
March 28, 2016
The Social Security Administration (SSA) has added new instructions to the Hearings, Appeals, and Litigation Law (HALLEX) manual (I-2-2-22 for the hearing level and I-3-1-30 for the Appeals Council level) governing the escalation of claims. Read More

Ticket to Work Rules May Face Revision
March 28, 2016
In a recent Federal Register announcement, SSA is “soliciting public input on whether and how we might revise the current Ticket to Work program rules. Read More

SSA to Waive SSI Same-Sex Overpayments
March 28, 2016
In previous editions of this newsletter, we have reported on the conundrum created by the Social Security Administration’s (SSA’s) continuing to issue Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits to members of same-sex couples as if they were single even after the Supreme Court struck down the Defense of Marriage Act in United States v. Windsor, –– U.S. ––, 133 S. Ct. 2675, 2695, 186 L.Ed.2d 808 (2013). In May 2015, SSA issued Emergency Message (EM) 15016, providing that future SSI can be reduced or terminated based on the income or resources of a same-sex spouse, but not prior months. Read More

Appeals Council Will Not Return Evidence
March 28, 2016
On February 5, 2016, the Social Security Administration (SSA) adopted a final rule that was published as a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM). See the October 2015 issue of the Disability Law News. Read More

Service Animals Eligible for Treats
March 28, 2016
We all know that a monthly Supplemental Security Income (SSI) grant does not go very far these days. And pets can be expensive, especially on a limited budget. But did you know the NYS Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance (OTDA) is supposed to help SSI recipients with food for guide, hearing or service dogs? Read More

Second Circuit Remands for Severity Finding
March 28, 2016
In the case of Ornelas-Sanchez v. Colvin, 2016 WL 374042 (2d Cir. Feb. 1, 2016), the Second Circuit vacated the judgment of the district court and remanded for the Commissioner to determine if the plaintiff’s intellectual disability constituted a severe impairment . Read More

Eighth Circuit Rules on Somatoform Disorder
March 28, 2016
These days, we often lament we do not practice within the Seventh Circuit, in order to take advantage of Judge Posner’s series of decisions excoriating the Social Security Administration (SSA). Read More

Treating Physician Rules Require Remand
March 28, 2016
Congratulations to Chris Cadin of Legal Services of Central New York on a recent federal court decision. Read More

Court Remands for Proper Weighing of Medical Evidence
March 28, 2016
Social Security regulations set out specific requirements for considering and weighing medical evidence. Read More

Improper Evaluation of Fibromyalgia Leads to Remand
March 28, 2016
Fibromyalgia is a difficult disease to diagnose. In our Social Security disability claims, many Administrative Law Judges (ALJs) look skeptically on complaints of this disease, particularly since there is often little objective medical evidence to support the claim. Read More

District Court REmands Kid's Case
March 28, 2016
Mike Hampden of the Partnership for Children’s Rights in New York City has scored yet another victory in a children’s SSI cases. Read More

Sickle Cell Listing Argument Prevails
March 28, 2016
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the mortality rate for young African-American children with sickle cell disease has steadily decreased since 2000, when a vaccine for invasive pneumococcal disease was introduced. Read More

Extra Research Pays Off
March 28, 2016
What do you do when your client presents with an unusual medical impairment that you have never confronted before? If you are veteran DAP advocate David Ralph of the Elmira office of LawNY, you do lots of research and help the Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) understand the condition. Read More

Evidence From Prior Claim Saves the Day
March 28, 2016
In another David Ralph victory, he again proved hard work and perseverance can pay off. David’s client had been approved for benefits, thanks also to David’s hard work, back in 2003. Read More

SSA Annual Waterfall Chart Available
March 28, 2016
Once again, the Social Security Administration (SSA) has confirmed our suspicions that approval rates are not going up. Read More

Is the Appeals Council Sending Bar Codes?
March 28, 2016
According to the Appeals Council “Best Practices Guide” for representatives, the best method to submit a Request for Review suggests requesting a twenty-five day extension in order to obtain the bar codes necessary to submit new evidence. Read More

Don't Be Fooled by ODAR Texts
March 28, 2016
Sue Bosworth-Quinlan of the Cortland office of the Legal Aid Society of Mid-New York has alerted us to yet another scam involving companies trolling for clients. Read More

NY Court of Appeals Rules on WEP
March 28, 2016
Supplemental Security Income (SSI) claimants who received safety net assistance (SNA) while their SSI applications were pending may have their retroactive awards reduced as reimbursement to the local Department of Social Services (DSS) for the “interim assistance” paid. Read More

Web News - March 2016
March 28, 2016
EAJA Rates Available; Get Your SSA Redbook; ABA Right to Counsel Resource Read More

End Note - March 2016
Manage Your Energy Instead of Your Time
March 28, 2016
What happens when your work seems to expand beyond the hours in your day? All too often, many of us forego other things like sleep, exercise, or fun, to try to cram in more work hours. Read More

Borderline Age POMS Amended
March 28, 2016
The Social Security Administration (SSA) has announced new POMS regarding the application of the Medical-Vocational Guidelines (the “grid”) in cases where the claimant is within six months of a new age category. Read More

Bulletin Board
September 27, 2010
The "Bulletin Board" contains information about recent disability decisions from the United States Supreme Court and the United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit. Read More

Bulletin Board
October 31, 2017
Astrue v. Capato; Shalala v. Schaefer; Lesterhuis v. Colvin; Talavera v. Astrue Read More

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