The Social Security Office of Hearing Operations has been closed for over a year to in-person hearings. Hearings have been held by phone since April of 2020 and now the Social Security Administration has developed guidelines for conducting video hearings over Microsoft Teams. I highly recommend that you discuss this with your representative and seek consultation with a firm specializing in disability claims before agreeing to a video hearing on your own. Not only is it important to the privacy of your own information to know the best format for your specific case, but it is just as important to be made aware of the specifics of these hearings, including knowing whether or not your device can accommodate this type of hearing.
Here at Gardberg and Kemmerly, P.C., we have specialized hearing rooms available so that you and your representative with our firm will conduct your hearing over video through the Microsoft Teams application, without worrying about any external factors. That includes if you are in your home, or if you are homeless, making sure you have a private place to be able to talk about your health matters. Additionally, your representative is with you just as if we were in a regular hearing room at the Office of Hearing Operations.
Showing up to a video hearing unprepared can harm your case, just as if you walked into the court room unprepared. Hopefully, the Social Security Administration will implement plans to get back to regular in-person hearings soon. Till then, know that you have options, and it is important to your claim to discuss those options thoroughly with experienced representatives.