How to Evaluate the Claim
When evaluating a Social Security Disability claim to determine if it is ripe to appeal to the Federal Court you must assess whether the:
If your claim was not denied by the Appeals Council you cannot appeal your claim to the Federal Court.
Things to look for are: did the ALJ properly discuss all medical professional evaluations and note which evaluation he was giving controlling weight in his decision? Did the ALJ state whither the claimant can do their past relevant work? If not, was there testimony from a vocational expert at the hearing? Was there testimony by a medical expert at the hearing?
If you think there may have been an error of law in your claim, seek the advice of an attorney. The Law Offices of LaVan & Neidenberg have the experience you need to file your claim with the Federal Court.
Federal Electronic Filing System
The Federal District Courts have set up an electronic filing system called the CM/ECF system, which stands for Case Management/ Electronic Case Filing. This electronic filing system allows you to view docket sheets and documents associated with active cases. It also allows you to file documents with the Court electronically from the computer.
Attorneys must complete the attorney training course in order to register for the CM/ECF system and receive a user name and password. Once registered, they access the file by viewing the Docket in the CM/ECF system and submit motions to the court. It is required in the Southern District of Florida that all attorneys file Federal documents through CM/ECF.
Unrepresented claimants are not permitted to register for the CM/ECF system at this time. Unrepresented claimants must file their documents the traditional, which is through the Clerk of Courts. Claimants may access the electronic record system at the public computers at the Clerks Office. Also Claimants will receive notice of Filings through the U.S. Postal Service or via Fax.
When a document is filed electronically through CM/ECF the Court sends a Notice of Electronic filing to all parties on the case. This Notice of Electronic filing serves as a confirmation that CM/ECF has registered your transaction and the document has been added to the Official Court docket. Electronic filing significantly improves the timely processing of Appeals before the Federal Courts.
The Law Offices of LaVan and Neidenberg file documents electronically and comply with the Federal Rules of procedure.
Remand under Sentence 4
A remand under Sentence 4 of the statute means that the Federal Judge has agreed that an error of law has been made and has decided to remand the case for a new hearing before an Administrative Law Judge (‘ALJ'). It is generally the outcome the plaintiff wants when filing a Federal disability appeal to the Federal Court. In the remand decision the Federal Judge will give specific instructions on what issues need to be corrected in the new hearing. Once remanded the plaintiff has a right to request attorney fees from the government under the Equal Access to Justice Act.
Remand under Sentence 6
A Sentence 6 remand under the statute means that the Commissioner agrees to remand the case for a new hearing, however the Federal Court or SSA does not admit an error of law was made. The Federal Court and SSA only admit that there is new evidence to be considered on the claim. The evidence may be that the: Transcript of record is incomplete or has missing exhibits; or evidence is missing form the record. In this case the SSA Commissioner does not admit that the SSA administrative law judge made an error of law, and therefore no federal attorney fees (EAJA) are due because there was no admission of error.
If the Federal Court Judge determines that there was not an error of law made the Federal Judge will deny the plaintiff's motion on appeal. In general, the Federal Judge's decision is final. In some cases the attorney may appeal the claim to a higher Federal court, however, that is very rare.
Appealing to the Federal Court is a complicated and detailed process. In order to get the results you are seeking it is important that you or your representative understand the local Rules of Federal procedure.
Hire an Experienced Attorney
Attorneys who appeal SSI and Social Security Disability Insurance Benefits claims to the Federal Court must be experts in the Federal process. If you are considering a Federal Appeal you should consult an attorney and make sure that the attorney has handled several Federal Appeals.
Representation by an attorney at the Federal level, by an experienced attorney, will help you through this challenging process. The attorney will present your case to the Federal Judge and argue against the US attorney who represents the Commissioner of the Social Security Administration.
The US Attorney Defends the SSA Commissioner
The position of the government is always represented by a US Attorney who is trained in Social Security Federal Appeals. Filing a claim without an attorney to represent you may delay your claim or, if not filed correctly may result in your claim being dismissed. The attorney must understand the Federal rules of filing and the rules of the local District to make sure the claim is followed through correctly.
The Law Offices of LaVan and Neidenberg have several attorneys that specialize in Federal Disability claims. We work with you to make sure that your case gets the attention it deserves.