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Notice of Hearing

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

2009. Notice of Hearing

2009.1 When are claimants sent hearing notices?

Notice of the time and place of the hearing is sent by the ALJ to the parties to the hearing at least 20 days before the date set for the hearing, to allow time to prepare for it.

2009.2 Where is the hearing held?

The hearing before the ALJ is usually held in the area where the person requesting the hearing resides, although the person may be required to travel up to 75 miles.

2009.3 Are travel expenses paid?

The Government will pay travel expenses to you and reasonably necessary witnesses only if travel over 75 miles is required. The Government may pay a representative for travel expenses to attend a hearing. The travel must originate within the geographic area of the hearing office having jurisdiction over the hearing. The Government specifies a maximum travel allowance.

2009.4 Can an ALJ issue subpoenas?

Yes, an ALJ has authority to issue subpoenas requiring the attendance and testimony of witnesses and the production of any evidence that relates to the issues involved in the hearing.

2009.5 Can hearings be held outside of the United States?

There is no provision for holding a hearing outside the U.S. The U.S. is defined as the 50 States, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, the U.S. Virgin Islands, Guam, American Samoa, and the Northern Mariana Islands.

2009.6 What should a person do who is outside the U.S. and wishes a hearing?

If you live outside the U.S. and wish a hearing, the ALJ may decide the case based on the record and any additional evidence submitted, with no one appearing in person. Otherwise, you may travel to the U.S. at your own expense for an oral hearing.

Last Revised: Jul. 26, 2005



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