Unfortunately, Social Security offices across the country have been closing due to budget issues. It has been reported that over the last five years, more than 60 field offices across the country have closed, along with more than 500 mobile offices. Additionally, some offices have cut back on hours of operation and the number of employees working.
Recently, the Office of Inspector General (OIG) released a report detailing the effects of the closures. Among its findings:
- Many citizens are unaware of the field office cutbacks.
- Field office managers reported that the hours they have to handle complex cases or hold staff meetings has dwindled.
- Wait times at field offices increased from 14.4 minutes in July 2011 to 30.5 minutes in November 2013, resulting in more complaints.
- Appointment calendars are often booked through 60-day periods.
- Overtime has been cut back.
To read the OIG report, you can click here.
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It is our hope that our elected officials will take note of this report and allocate funds to meet the public demands. Many people are starting to speak out about the service issues, with some people writing letters to their local newspapers and elected officials.
This is yet another reminder that it is important to work with an attorney if you have questions relating to Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) or Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits. It may be in your best interest to work with someone who can help you work through an application or an appeal in an attempt to speed up the process. Keep in mind, the overwhelming majority of initial applications for disability are denied.
We can help you navigate your way through the disability process, which can be very complicated. Do not hesitate to contact our Tulsa Social Security disability lawyers for a free consultation. Our firm works on a contingency fee basis, and our fee agreement is governed by the Social Security Regulations.
Troutman & Troutman, P.C. – Tulsa Social Security disability lawyers
Troutman Touts: Social Security offices served more than 43 million visitors in 2013.