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Hearing by an Administrative Law Judge (ALJ)

Excerpted from "Social Security Handbook". See the up-to-date, official Social Security Handbook at ssa.gov.

2007. Hearing by an Administrative Law Judge (ALJ)

2007.1 When can a claimant request a hearing before an ALJ?

A hearing before an ALJ may be requested if:

  1. You disagree with the reconsidered determination;

  2. You show in writing that your rights may be adversely affected by the decision; or

  3. We have made a reconsidered determination or another type of determination that provides the right to a hearing before an ALJ. These are listed in SSA's regulations.

2007.2 When must the request be made?

You must make a request for a hearing in writing within 60 days after you receive the notice of the determination. (See §2000, §2001, and §2015.)

2007.3 What are the procedures at the hearing?

At the hearing you may:

  1. Appear in person or by video teleconference;

  2. Testify under oath or affirmation;

  3. Submit new evidence;

  4. Examine the evidence used in making the determination under review; and

  5. Present and question witnesses. (See §2011.)

2007.4 What happens if a claimant waives the right to an oral hearing?

If you waive the right to an oral hearing, the ALJ will ordinarily make a decision based on the evidence already submitted and any additional evidence that you or any other party presented.

2007.5 What is the basis for the ALJ's decision?

The ALJ makes a decision on the basis of:

  1. The evidence already submitted;

  2. Any additional evidence you present;

  3. Evidence that is otherwise obtained; and

  4. Any testimony given at the hearing.

Last Revised: Aug. 6, 2007

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