Generally, when a person with a disability applies for Supplemental Security Income, the Administrative Law Judge evaluating the individual’s claim will assess the evidence submitted by the claimant, including medical records and testimony. If the Judge relies on unsuitable evidence, though, it can result in an inappropriate decision and may be grounds for a reversal, as demonstrated in a recent Massachusetts case. If you suffer from a disability, you may be able eligible for social security benefits, and it is prudent to speak with a skillful Massachusetts social security disability attorney regarding your rights.
The Underlying Hearing
It is reported that the plaintiff suffered a head injury when she was 23-years-old, after which she spent a year in a rehabilitation center. Since the accident, she suffered seizures and memory decline, and in 2012 an MRI of her brain showed post-traumatic changes. She began treating for anxiety, depression, and seizure disorder but continued to suffer significant symptoms. She ultimately underwent testing that indicated she suffered from numerous mental and physical ailments.
Allegedly, in 2014 the plaintiff filed an application for social security disability benefits. Her claim was denied, and she filed an appeal. She received a hearing before an Administrative Law Judge (Judge), who determined her ailments were not sufficiently severe to warrant benefits. The plaintiff then appealed, arguing, in part, that the Judge improperly relied on lay testimony and failed to give sufficient weight to her medical expert. The appellate court agreed and reversed the Judge’s ruling. Continue reading →