NOSSCR provides the latest updates from the Social Security Administration.
NPRM TO CLARIFY WHEN AND HOW HEARINGS MAY BE HELD BY ADMINISTRATIVE APPEALS JUDGES AT THE APPEALS COUNCIL
- SSA issued a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) on December 20, 2019 proposing to revise its rules to clarify when and how administrative appeals judges (AAJs) at the Appeals Council may hold hearings and issue decisions. Per the NPRM, the Appeals Council already has the authority to hold hearings and issue decisions under its existing statute and regulations, but SSA has not exercised this authority or explained the circumstances under which it would be appropriate for the Appeals Council to assume responsibility for holding a hearing and issuing a decision. “The proposed clarifications will ensure the Appeals Council is not limited in the type of claims for which it may hold hearings.” SSA is proposing these rules in anticipation that they will increase its adjudicative capacity when needed, allowing the agency to adjust more quickly to fluctuating short-term workloads, such as when an influx of cases reaches the hearings level. Comments are due no later than February 18, 2020.
NPRM ISSUED ON RULES REGARDING THE FREQUENCY AND NOTICE OF CONTINUING DISABILITY REVIEWS
- SSA published a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking on November 18, 2019 proposing to revise its regulations regarding when and how often they conduct continuing disability reviews (CDR), which are periodic reviews of eligibility required for benefit continuation. The proposed rules would add a category to the existing medical diary categories that is used to schedule CDRs and revise the criteria for assigning each of the medical diary categories to cases. The proposed rules would also change the frequency with which SSA performs a CDR for claims with the medical diary category for permanent impairments. The revised changes would ensure that SSA continues to maintain appropriate stewardship of the disability program and identify medical improvement (MI) at its earliest point.