It’s no secret that the coronavirus public health emergency has changed the way we do things. Even the Social Security Administration (“Social Security”) has not been immune. Before COVID-19, people had the option of handling services by going to their local Social Security office. Telephone and online serves were, and still are, options. However, online video hearings are now available to handle your sensitive Social Security matters.
Social Security Hearings, Generally
For example, people who were denied benefits or who disagree with a decision made by Social Security have already been able to request a hearing. In some cases, hearings occur at the second level of an appeal. At that point, you have the right to hearing before an Administrative Law Judge. Social Security typically held hearings in person or by telephone.
But everything changed in March of 2020. That’s when Social Security announced it was closing its hearing offices. Many people who need Social Security services are vulnerable to COVID-19, so it made sense to take this drastic step. In-person hearings would resume when they felt it was safe. In the meantime, Social Security began to offer online video hearings.
New Online Opportunities and Guidelines
Online video hearings make it possible for people to be heard by the Administrative Law Judge from an Office of Hearings Operations (OHO) office, your attorney’s office, or a Social Security field office. You, your attorney, and the administrative law judge do not have to be in the same room.
Social Security handles all hearings the same way, whether they are in person, by phone, or using an online platform. After you request a hearing, Social Security will notify you of the date and time for your online video hearings.
The OHO office uses state-of-the-art video and audio equipment to make the process easier. It’s almost as if you were meeting face-to-face.
Also, Social Security ensures the security and privacy of online video hearings. Technicians are generally available to help with any glitches that arise before or during the hearing.
Do You Need to Participate in Online Video Hearings with Social Security?
When going through the appeal process, it helps to have someone in your corner. That’s especially true in our current state of change. Navigating Social Security procedures and regulations is challenging at best.
The attorneys at The Law Offices of Martin Taller have the experience and ability to take on your case. For a free consultation, call us at 714-385-8100. We assist clients throughout Southern California from our home office in Anaheim.