Most claimants are anxious about the prospect of attending a disability hearing. Experienced disability attorneys in Augusta can be of inestimable value if you are facing this prospect.
The Actual Hearing
Unlike a hearing conducted in court, a Social Security disability hearing does not pit one side against another. You and your disability attorneys in Augusta, along with such witnesses as may be needed, will meet before an Administrative Law Judge (ALJ ). The Social Security Administration is not represented by counsel, seeing its role as simply an organization that either provides or denies benefits based on the presence or absence of a qualifying disability.
The determination of disability is made by the ALJ, an impartial entity whose overall responsibility is to examine the facts presented and decide whether or not the claimant can be declared disabled according to the specifications in the Social Security Act. Your disability lawyers in Augusta will be present with you at this hearing, and will assist you in presenting your case.
Approximately 60% of cases that reach the hearing level are found disabled by the ALJ. Naturally, as ALJs are individuals, there is variation in how one may view a case as opposed to another. Your disability lawyers in Augusta will caution you that although the ALJ is considered neutral and all adhere to that role, some are more readily persuaded than others concerning the claimant’s qualifications and their approval rates vary accordingly.
It is the responsibility of your disability lawyers in Augusta to acquire, assemble, organize and submit all of the medical documentation, reports, opinions and related information before and after the hearing as required, and to present your case to the ALJ.
Your disability attorneys in Augusta will arrange for witnesses to give testimony and will question or cross-examine any witnesses that the ALJ might wish to present during the hearing. Whether the attorney agrees with the ALJ or not, it is his/her responsibility to present your case in a manner that reflects positively on both of you and reinforces to the ALJ your qualifications for disability.
Disagreeing with the ALJ
It is entirely possible that your disability attorneys in Augusta may take issue with the ALJ’s evaluation of the law or the facts being presented, but a confrontational situation is counterproductive and should be avoided. Your lawyer and the ALJ are both concerned with the proper disposition of your case, and it often happens that an ALJ who permits an attorney to argue is also one who will speak out when a point of contention arises so that it can be effectively resolved.
Attendance and Admissibility
Whether you choose to attend your hearing personally or via video teleconferencing is your decision. You have the option of refusing a video appearance if you prefer. Unlike a court trial, the usual restrictions on admissibility of evidence are lessened. Your disability attorneys in Augusta may present evidence at a hearing that would not normally be admissible in court, and the time frame for submission is not as restricted. An extension can be requested if your attorney requires additional time to obtain and submit a particular piece of evidence that is difficult to procure. Such evidence may be obtained by subpoena if your attorney feels it necessary to request it.
You Are Not Alone
Your disability attorneys in Augusta are there to fight for you. Don’t wait. Contact Wilkinson & Magruder, LLP at 706-737-0771 and get the advice and guidance you need today.