Attorneys earn 25% of a claimant's backpay, up to $6,000, for attending a hearing before an ALJ. Most claimants have representation at disability hearings.
SSA should require the claimant's attorney to earn their fee by submitting to ALJ's proposed findings of fact and conclusions of law. The attorney provides a summary of all relevant evidence, opinions, and inconsistencies that require resolution not later than one week before the hearing. The attorney or representative shall deliver to the ALJ/ODAR an electronic copy of these findings in Word format.
Now, instead of reviewing hundreds of pages in a transcript, SSA/ODAR decision writers, analysts, and ALJ's can verify the accuracy in the proposed findings of fact in half the time and issue twice as many decisions.
Instead of typing detail medical summaries, the employees can cut and paste from the proposed findings of fact and conclusions of law, editing as needed. This fact alone reduces the amount of time spent typing or keyboarding a decision.