The Social Security Administration allows, and often prefers, video teleconferencing for Social Security disability hearings. From the government’s perspective, video teleconferencing decreases the Social Security disability hearing backlog, increases efficiency, and decreases the travel expenses for administrative law judges. According to a blog post on the Social Security Administration’s website, the agency believes that the “procedure and development of the case is equal to in-person hearings” when video conferencing is used.
But There Are Some Things That You Should Know Before You Agree to a Social Security Disability Video Hearing
A video hearing is a good option for some, but not all, Social Security disability applicants. If you are facing a hearing, it is important to know that:
- There could be benefits to a video hearing. If you decide to participate in a video hearing, you will not have to travel to the closest hearing office and you may have a shorter wait time than you would for an in-person hearing.
- There could be drawbacks to a video hearing. While an administrative law judge will consider the same evidence regardless of the type of hearing you have, the administrative law judge may understand your disability better and make a better determination about your credibility if you meet in person. It is easier to read body language and pick up on nuances in person rather than over a screen.
Regardless of whether you have a video hearing or an in-person hearing, you have the right to be represented by an attorney and you have the right to present the same evidence.
The Choice Is Up to You
You have the right to have an in-person hearing if you decide that you want one. Before you make a decision, however, it is important to review all of the pros and cons of both options with an experienced Social Security disability lawyer. Then, you can make an informed decision based on accurate and complete information. For more information about how to handle your upcoming Social Security disability hearing, please make an appointment with a board certified Social Security disability lawyer who can make sure that your rights are protected. Please reach out to us via this website or by phone to learn more and to schedule your meeting.
by Paul B. Burkhalter Managing Partner of Morgan & Weisbrod, Board Certified in Social Security Disability Law.