The Indianapolis Office of Disability Adjudication and Review has a tremendous backlog of Social Security disability appeals waiting to be heard by Administrative Law Judges (ALJ). This is no big secret to the Social Security Administration (SSA) and in an attempt to help alleviate the huge caseload they have turned to video hearings. Does this mean an Indiana Social Security disability claimant will have a video hearing? No, there is still a possibility you will appear at an “in person” hearing with the ALJ sitting right in front of you. Indianapolis disability attorney Scott Lewis has noticed recently that Indiana disability claimants need to expect the unexpected when dealing with Administrative Law Judges from other locations.
It is not uncommon for Indiana Social Security disability attorneys to see the same Administrative Law Judges over and over at “in person” hearings at the Indianapolis Social Security hearings office. Familiarity with the Judges can often help an Indiana Social Security disability lawyer know what to expect at the court proceeding and be well prepared for the type of questions that will be asked by the Judge. Also, this type of familiarity will usually help the Social Security disability attorney know what particular things a certain judge is looking for to achieve a favorable outcome.
Now, lets mix in an Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) sitting in a courtroom peering through a small television monitor hundreds of miles away who may have never stepped foot in the state of Indiana. You may enter the courtroom in a wheelchair, the ALJ may not see, and you may grimace in pain that he may not see, and then he speaks to you in a voice that seems to echo from the audio equipment. You look at your Indianapolis Social Security Attorney for guidance and he displays calm character as if he has it all under control, but is thinking you may have faired much better at an in person hearing. It is Indianapolis disability attorney Scott Lewis’ experience some mental and physical disabilities may be very difficult for a Judge to assess through means of audio visual equipment.
So, are video hearings a bad thing? Attorney Scott Lewis thinks it depends on the Administrative Law Judge conducting the hearing and various other variables already stated. While you as an Indiana Social Security disability claimant may be thrilled that you are getting a hearing earlier than you would have, the possibility that you may receive an unfavorable outcome because you have agreed to a video hearing is always there. In Indianapolis Social Security lawyer Scott Lewis’ experience, you do have a right to decline a video hearing and have an “in person” hearing. This is a decision you can discuss with your Social Security disability lawyer or representative.
The above information is the experience of Indianapolis Disability Scott Lewis’. Other disability attorneys may not share these viewpoints.