Misplaced Priorities: How the Social Security Administration Sacrificed Quality for Quantity in the Disability Determination Process

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Serial Number
Levin Center Identifier
Document Date
2014-12-18
Report Length
54 pages
Policy Agendas Project Major Code
Policy Agendas Project Minor Code
Additional, Minority, Dissenting Views
Found Using Methodology
Yes
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Commission(s)
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Brief Executive Summary
In this report, the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform focused investigated problems within the disability appeals process, when Administrative Law Judges (ALJs) review appealed cases and decide whether or not to award benefits. The report finds that the SSA made no effort to monitor whether its ALJs were issuing policy-compliant decisions prior to the first publication of ALJ disposition data. It also documents that the SSA failed to properly oversee its ALJs because of the agency's singular focus on moving cases through the system as quickly as possible regardless of the quality of those decisions. This has resulted in taxes to finance federal disability programs being squandered because of agency mismanagement that has led to hundreds of billions of dollars of improper benefit awards.
Related Hearings
House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, Subcommittee on Energy Policy, Healthcare and Entitlements, hearing on "Oversight of Rising Social Security Disability Claims and the Role of Administrative Law Judges," 113th Cong., H.Hrg. 113-44, (2013, June 27)
House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, hearing on "Social Security Administration Oversight: Examining the Integrity of the Disability Determination Appeals Process," 113th Cong., H.Hrg. 113-128, (2014, June 10)
Senate Committee on Finance, hearing on "Funding Social Security\342\200\231s Administrative Costs: Will the Budget Meet the Mission?" 110th Cong., (2007, May 23)
House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, hearing on "Social Security Administration Oversight: Examining the Integrity of the Disability Determination Appeals Process," 113th Cong., H.Hrg. 113-128, (2014, June 10)
House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, Subcommittee on Energy Policy, Healthcare and Entitlements, hearing on "Oversight of Rising Social Security Disability Claims and the Role of Administrative Law Judges," 113th Cong., H.Hrg. 113-44, (2013, June 27)
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Authors–Staff Members
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Authors–Additional, Minority, Dissenting Views
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