If you have a disability that prevents you from working and have been waiting months (or years) for your Social Security Disability (SSD) claim to make it through the process, you can probably use a little good news. That makes it exciting to learn that the federal government is actually starting to make some headway on its backlog of claims.
There are a lot of problems with the Social Security Disability claims process. Wrongful denials at the initial filing level are disturbingly common. The doctors reviewing claims are paid by the claim, so they may rush through decisions to maximize their own income. “Independent” consultative physicians may be anything but truly independent. Thousands of very sick people have died waiting on their chance to plead their case for approval in front of an Administrative Law Judge (ALJ).
There have been a lot of new articles about the backlog of cases — and Social Security itself has tried to address the problem several times in the past. So how did they finally make some progress? They let many of their workers try remote working.
Since field offices at the agency closed on March 23, 2020, and many employees began to work remotely, the backlog of pending claims has dropped a remarkable 11%.
Experts say that this shouldn’t come as a surprise. Productivity levels are generally known to be higher among work-at-home employees than those stuck in office cubicles. Maybe now the administration will start to consider revising its largely negative view of telework for federal employees.
If your Social Security Disability claim has been denied, it’s more important than ever to get every step in your appeal right. Talk to an attorney who understands the process and find out how they can help.