Class action lawsuit filed against Social Security Administration
Under federal Social Security disability law, those who suffer from permanent mental or physical disabilities that keep them from working, or who are very low-income, are entitled to receive a certain amount of help from the government.
Applying and waiting for a response after submitting a Social Security disability application does take time, however, and may not always result in a successful outcome.
Thankfully, applicants whose initial claims have been denied can appeal that denial. In such a case, an applicant could end up appearing before an administrative law judge to present his or her case in the hope of demonstrating the truth of his or her disability claim.
Unfortunately, thousands of applicants who brought their SSD appeals before five particular administrative law judges may have had their appeals denied unfairly. Statistics show that this particular court, not in Maryland, appears to have been biased against the predominantly immigrant applicant pool, approving only half of the appeals, on average and, in some cases, as few as 10 percent of claims.
To make matters worse, the disabled applicants were treated with contempt through combative and unhelpful questioning by these judges, which likely left many of the applicants with a sense of hopelessness.
A class-action lawsuit has been filed in order to seek redress for these applicants. The SSA recently settled the lawsuit with the applicants. Now it is possible that more than 4,000 SSD applications may be reheard by new judges under newly implemented policies aimed at preventing bias from obscuring the truth behind an individual's SSD appeal.