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What does a senior Attorney and Decision writer do for Social Security?

Astoria, OR |

I got denied for SSI/SSD 3 times with Social Security and so I got a lawyer. I have been unable to work since December 2009.Social Security says I can work( wrong). My lawyer put in for a hearing. I am also getting the help from a Senator in Oregon, both are working great for me. 1st my case was reviewed, then it was sent to a senior Attorney for Social Security, and I get another letter from Sen. office and my file is with a Decison Writer. just wondered what that means? I havent seen a judge yet. so does that mean that looking at all current info that I cant work and that I could get SSI/SSD?, I need surgery on back ( herniated discs and rheumetoid Arthritis), and knee replacement on both knees (Degenerative Arthritis in both knees).It has been 1 month since went to Decision writer.

Attorney Answers 1


From your question, it appears that you already have an attorney handling your file, and it also appears from the facts provided that your attorney is doing an excellent job for you in exhausting all avenues of attack to help move your claim forward to a favorable resolution. Since you are currently represented, my answer to your question is directed at any other readers who may read this question, and any specific claim-related questions you may have about your specific situation should be addressed directly to your lawyer. While my Social Security practice is focused primarily on cases in Georgia and Tennessee, and while there are slight variations in how cases are handled by in different regions despite the national nature of Social Security practice, the fact that your claim has been reviewed by a Senior Attorney and is now with a decision writer is likely a good sign. It has been my experience that in cases where a case is at the hearing level (the final stage of administrative appeal) and where there may be potential for the claim to be considered for a favorable ruling without the need for a hearing and prior to assignment of the file to a judge, that the claim is assigned to a Senior Attorney for review and for consideration for a possible "on-the-record" decision. In my experience with Social Security cases in Georgia and Tennessee (and a few in Alabama), assignment of a claim to a Senior Attorney is generally a good sign that a claim is likely to receive a favorable ruling, and even in cases where the Senior Attorney determines that the case needs to proceed to hearing, there is no risk in having a Senior Attorney review the file first. If the Senior Attorney determines that a favorable decision can be issued, however, then the Senior Attorney can issue the decision in their name instead of through the judge, and assuming the claimant does not choose to appeal the Senior Attorney's decision, then the Senior Attorney's decision takes on the full force of a favorable judicial decision after a specified time period (usually 30 days). From the limited facts above, it appears that you have a very deserving claim, and also that you have a skilled advocate working on your behalf. I wish you all the best with your claim.

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thanks for what you wrote. The Senior Attorney got my file in Early June 2011 and the Decision Writer got in Early July. so I am waiting to get a letter in the mail.. Thanks for giving me info.