Effective April 20, 2013, to the relief of Attorneys/Representatives and some Administrative Law Judges (ALJs), the Office of Adjudication and Review (ODAR), will once again disclose the names of the Judges when hearing notices are mailed. Please see my prior blog dated March 1, 2012, which addresses SSA’s prior policy of only disclosing the names of Judges on the day of the hearings. Attorneys/Representatives felt that they could not properly prepare the hearings in advance to satisfy particular Judges. For example, some Judges require pretrial briefs or want the attorneys to present the cases from opening to closing a certain way. Moreover, Attorneys/Representatives could not explain to a client, in advance, what he/she could expect when appearing before the Judge assigned to the case.
Aside from the hearing notices mailed to Attorneys/Representatives, as well as claimants after April 20, 2013, Attorneys/Representatives using online services called Appointed Representative Services (ARS) can find out which Judge is assigned to the client’s case. As an aside, ARS is useful in accessing a client’s electronic evidence folder before the hearing, in addition to the recording of hearing testimony. For hearing notices sent out before April 20, 2013, another option is to call the ODAR offices to find out which Judge is scheduled to hear the case. If you have any questions about your case, please contact the Law Offices of Kathleen M Flynn, LLC at 404-479-4431 or visit our website at www.kathleenflynnlaw.com.