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Disability Law News - May 2009 Issue


Articles in this Issue

Subsequent Application Reopens Earlier Claim
May 1, 2009
Sometimes the past really is prologue. LJ Fisher, an attorney with the Rochester office of the Empire Justice Center, represented a client who suffers from AIDS, hepatitis C, liposarcoma, anxiety and depression. The client had originally filed an application for Disability Insurance and Supplemental Security Income benefits on September 17, 2003, with date last insured (DLI) of December 2005. Read More

Appeals Council to the Rescue
May 1, 2009
Although we often accuse the Appeals Council of merely rubberstamping decisions, occasionally this august body comes through in egregious cases and does the right thing. Andrea Sasala of Nassau/Suffolk Law Services sent us an example of such an intervention. Read More

Lawsuit Challenges OCSE Notice
May 1, 2009
Hardly a newsletter goes by without some mention of the seemingly endless problems our clients face with frozen bank accounts. Read More

NDNY Federal Court Bar Association Starts Pro Se Program
May 1, 2009
The Northern District of New York (NDNY) Federal Court Bar Association (FCBA) has started a Pro Se Assistance Program designed to assist litigants who are representing themselves in civil actions in federal court. Read More

Second Circuit Promulgates New Rules
May 1, 2009
Advocates practicing in the Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit are all too aware of the intricacies of the Federal Rules of Appellate Procedure. On top of that, the Court has its own local versions of some of these rules. Several new local rules are definitely worth your attention. Read More

The Second Circuit Speaks
May 1, 2009
When the Second Circuit Court of Appeals speaks, we all tend to lend an ear and listen closely. We wish, though, that we heard better news of late. The Circuit Court issued three unfavorable decisions so far in 2009. Read More

No 2010 COLA Planned
May 1, 2009
And we are not talking about the tax on sugary soft drinks proposed by New York Governor Paterson as a method for closing the State’s budget gap. We are talking about that sacred cow, annual cost of living adjustments (COLA) in the Social Security programs linked historically to increases in the Consumer Price Index (CPI). Read More

Advocate Overcome Probation Warrants
May 1, 2009
As the lead article of this newsletter outlines, clients with outstanding probation or parole warrants still face suspension and denial of benefits under SSA’s “fleeing felon” provisions. Read More

Settlement Reached in Fleeing Felon Case
May 1, 2009
Fleeing felon issues continue to burden claimants and confound advocates. The SSI “fugitive felon” provisions in the Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act of 1996 (PRWORA), 42 U.S.C. §1382(e)(4)(A) & (B), were extended to the Title II program in 2004. Read More

SSA Withdraws Proposad Age Definition Changes
May 1, 2009
In November 2005, the Social Security Administration (SSA) published proposed regulations that would have changed each of the “age” categories by bumping up by two years the applicable definition: a person closely approaching retirement age would have to be 62 years old, up from 60; a person of advanced would be 57, up from 55; a person closely approaching advanced would be 52, up from 50; and younger persons would be aged 47- 51 (up from 45 - 49). Read More

Notice Something Missing?
May 1, 2009
With this edition of the Disability Law News, we have discontinued our Class Actions section. Information about class actions – past and present – will be made available in the near future on the soon to be unveiled new and improved Empire Justice Center website. Read More

SSA Commissioner Blasts State Cuts
May 1, 2009
A recent New York Times article cites SSA Commissioner Michael J. Astrue as blaming the governors for increasing the delays at Social Security. Read More

State Comptroller Investigates OTDA's CE Contacts
May 1, 2009
New York State Comptroller Thomas P. DiNapoli and State Inspector General Joseph Fisch have released a report of a joint investigation into the process OTDA (Office of Temporary Disability Assistance) uses to award contracts for consultative examinations for determining medical eligibility of applicants applying for Social Security disability benefits. Read More

State Supplement Saved
May 1, 2009
As we told you in the January and March 2009 Disability Law News, New York State proposed to reduce the state supplement payable to SSI recipients as a budget cutting measure. We are happy to report that this proposed $84 million cut was restored in the Governor’s budget, so no reductions in the state supplement will occur in 2009. Read More

Stimulus Payment Queries
May 1, 2009
We have heard many questions about how Social Security’s one time $250 stimulus payment authorized by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA) will be treated in other need based programs. The checks have started to go out. Read More

What Happens If Your Client Dies?
May 1, 2009
David Ralph of the Elmira office of LAWNY, recently had to learn what to do when, unfortunately, his client passed away while her appeal was pending in U.S. District Court. Read More

Web News - May 2009
May 1, 2009
Just the Facts, Please Settlement, Anyone? Too Young for EPIC? Try NYPS Am I Eligible for Benefits? Read More

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