Thursday, March 3, 2011

Partially Favorable Decisions

A federal court remanded the decision of Administrative Law Judge (“ALJ”) Andrew Weiss for failing to apply Social Security Ruling (“SSR”) 83-20 properly. The ALJ found that the claimant became disabled due to his mental disorders in March 2007 because that is when he started seeing a psychologist. However, I argued that there was no evidence showing that the claimant’s condition became worse in March 2007, and there was evidence showing the claimant was disabled by January 2005.

On remand, without a hearing, ALJ Frederick Timm found the claimant became disabled as of January 31, 2005. By refusing to accept a partially favorable decision and prosecuting the case in federal court the claimant wound up receiving many additional months of Social Security Disability (“SSD”) benefits that amounted to a large five figure sum.

I received another partially favorable decision today, from ALJ Arthur Schneider. The ALJ selected a disability onset date that was based upon a report by a treating internist, even though the ALJ admitted that the internist concluded the claimant became disabled earlier at her alleged onset date. There were several other medical specialists who concluded that the claimant became disabled at her alleged onset date, including a neurologist who explained that the claimant’s condition was so severe that she met a listing 1.04 as of the alleged onset date. This claimant is also prepared to litigate in federal court in order to receive the additional SSD benefits to which she is entitled.

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