Using Video Hearings for Disability Backlog with SSA

It comes as no surprise to many that the Social Security Administration has a dizzyingly long line of individuals applying for disability claims and benefits, resulting in a backlog of social security benefit applications. Now, the Social Security Administration hopes to reduce both frustration and also expedite the application and claims process by using new methods such as video hearings.

Today, there are nearly 2 million applicants waiting, hoping to hear news about their application status in regards to their Social Security benefits.

Administration Law Judges are now able to use video hearings. Video hearings can carry out a disability hearing for a far-away applicant who is unable to travel due to their disability.

These video hearings are helping to speed up the application process, as video-hearings can take place sooner than an in-person hearing in which the applicant must find additional money in order to travel to the hearing.

Though the video hearings can be done sooner, applicants must realize that the video hearing is similar to a standard hearing. Thanks to technology, the judge overseeing the hearing will be able to zoom in or zoom out and also view the applicant from several different angles. Therefore, it is still important to dress accordingly.

This new technology is benefiting both applicants and the staff members who process the claims, as Social Security Commissioner Michael Astrue states that wait times could be reduced by as much as nine months by 2013.


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