Thursday, July 30, 2015

Fox-5 Atlanta I-team-Social Security disability: Stay in line or start all over?

Hear Disability Attorney Thomas O'Brien weigh in on the difficult choice between pursuing appeals beyond the ALJ level versus starting a new case.  Click below for the Fox-5 Atlanta I-Team Report, and read below the video story for Thomas' talking points about this difficult decision.
 Stay in Line or Start All Over?

Why File a request for Appeals Council review?
• A new case might not be an option because Claimant is no longer insured for disability (DLI)
• Claimant does not want to lose a few years of back benefits
• All original records would be considered, and not as usable in a new case
• Claimant is still generating new persuasive evidence that "relates back" to conditions considered in original filing
• A good hearing may have resulted in good issues for appeal

Why start a new claim?
• Might be able to file a new case prior to insurance lapse date (do not want to miss DLI)
• Claimant may be past age 50 during a new filing
• Can submit new evidence of new diagnoses (as well as ongoing care for old diagnoses)
• New sets of eyes on the case, and potentially more favorable odds
• High chance of losing at AC, meaning a loss of an additional delay in starting a new case
• A win at AC often means appearing again in front of denying judge
• The Appeals Council's scope of review is primarily to evaluate legal or procedural errors, and determines if evidence was properly considered
• Any new evidence at AC must "relate back"