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Lawsuit filed against Social Security Administration for case quotas

On behalf of Jeffrey Rabin of Jeffrey A. Rabin & Associates, Ltd. posted in SSA on Friday, April 19, 2013.

Whether you’ve read about the current state of the Social Security Administration here on this blog or heard about it somewhere else, chances are you’re like most Illinois residents and are concerned about the direction the administration is going. Like most people across the nation, you’ve probably heard about the complete depletion of funds by 2016 and the ever increasing number of disability cases each year. But something you may not have heard about is the lawsuit currently against the Social Security Administration for alleged case quotas.

The lawsuit claims that SSA enforces an illegal quota for the number of cases that administrative law judges must hear and decide on in a given year. The administration explains that while they set a benchmark of 500 to 700 disability cases a year that judges must hear, completing all of these is a productivity goal, not a quota.

The lawsuit claims that SSA enforces an illegal quota for the number of cases that administrative law judges must hear and decide on in a given year. The administration explains that while they set a benchmark of 500 to 700 disability cases a year that judges must hear, completing all of these is a productivity goal, not a quota.

Lawyers representing the case say it’s not being viewed that way.

According to the lawsuit, the requirement violates a judge’s independence and denies due process rights to applicants. Because the alleged quota forces a judge to decide on an average of two cases per day, a judge may approve a case that may not meet all of the necessary requirements for approval. In the end, the lawyers argue, judges are simply approving cases simply because they have to meet goals.

“Case quotas prevent judges from devoting necessary time to the most complex cases, resulting in waste and abuse,” explains the president of the Association of Administrative Law Judges. That’s not to say that every case is being rushed through the process. Some of the more complex cases may be denied despite meeting all of the requirements for approval. In the end, these disabled applicants are denied their benefits because judges do not have enough time to make a proper decision on the matter.

Source: The Huffington Post, “Judges Sue Social Security Over Case ‘Quotas’,” Stephen Ohlemacher, April 19, 2013

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