No, not a comedian’s straight line, but rather a query regarding the deliberateness with which the Social Security Administration (“SSA”) processes claims.
Over a decade ago, on April 29, 2008, I asked administrative law judge (“ALJ”) Newton Greenberg, now deceased, to amend his fully favorable decision to correct the Social Security Disability (“SSD”) application filing date. The decision said the filing date was April 27, 2007. During the hearing, I pointed out that I had the certified mail receipt showing that I filed the claimant’s SSD application on February 19, 2007. The decision found the claimant became disabled on June 27, 2005. During the hearing, I also pointed out that, consistent with my certified mail receipt, Exhibit 2E in the claim file confirmed that February 19, 2007 was the date when I actually filed the SSD application.
At the end of the hearing, I gave the ALJ an application claim form that was mailed by a person from the SSA district office, with that person’s initials on it, and was dated July 27, 2006. Mailing that claim form showed that the SSA was advised that the claimant wanted to file for SSD benefits, which is grounds for a protective filing date. When the hearing ended, the ALJ said that he would investigate the mailing from the district office.
When I received the ALJ’s decision, there was no discussion at all about the incorrect onset date. It merely stated that the application was filed on April 27, 2007. Consequently, I immediately submitted a letter asking the ALJ to issue an amended decision to reflect the actual filing date. At a minimum, the hearing decision needed to be amended to reflect an application date of February 19, 2007.
However, I argued that the application I handed the ALJ provided substantial evidence for a protective filing date of July 27, 2006, which would provide another seven months of benefits beyond the February 19, 2007 date.
I received an answer to my request for an amended decision today – 11 years and 3 months later. A new decision that accepted August 2, 2006 as the protective filing date. No explanation why the July 27, 2006 date was rejected, but obtaining an additional seven months of benefits.Previous Next
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