Friday, March 30, 2012

Another Example of ALJ Fier's Bias

Administrative Law Judge (“ALJ”) Seymour Fier is one of the five ALJ’s who is being sued for anti-claimant bias in the Bailey v. Astrue class action, Case No. 11-CV-1788 (CBA)(RLM).  I represent a 58 year old utility worker whose Social Security Disability (“SSD”) benefits were denied by ALJ Fier on the grounds that the claimant was working.  ALJ Fier knew that his decision was completely devoid of merit, but denied the SSD benefits anyway

Fier claimed that the claimant was not disabled because he worked as a proctor in 2007 and 2008.  However, Fier knew that the claimant earned a total of $341.12 in 2007 and $536.76 in 2008.  ALJ Fier, who has conducted thousands of hearings, also knew that for the work to qualify as substantial gainful activity (“SGA”), the claimant had to earn at least $900 and $940 a month for 2007 and 2008 respectively.

There is no rationale explanation for denying benefits on the grounds that the claimant was performing SGA, when the claimant’s total annual earnings did not even meet the monthly amount needed to constitute SGA.  The claimant had a new hearing before another ALJ on Wednesday, and a fully favorable decision was issued today.  Unfortunately, due to ALJ Fier’s anti-claimant bias, my client will have endured a nearly two year delay in receiving his past due SSD benefits.

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