Monday, April 27, 2009

How Cool Was THAT?

Can Social Security Payments be Garnished For Child Support?

SSD/SSI Expert blogger Jonathan Ginsberg answers this question in this recent post.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Social Security Wait Times

According to this quarter's edition of the NOSSCR Forum, the wait times for ALJ Hearings in Hartford presently stands at 380 days. The New haven office sits at 372 days and Springfield, Ma is at 335.

To give that some perspective, the New York screening unit has a 135 day processing time (the best) and Chicago, Il comes in dead last with a 783 day wait time.

The Forum is also reporting that Congress held a 2 hour hearing on March 24th with Social Security Commissioner Michael Astrue to address these long wait times. What will come out of that remains unknown.

If you have any questions about your rights to Social ecurity or SSI benefits, feel free to contact us.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Trouble Behind, Trouble Ahead: Syzmaszek meets Garland-Hall

I'm not quite sure what to make of this opinion. I am quite familiar with the Syzmaszek case having defended the City of Meriden in the matter for a number of years. I know all of the parties involved well, and am certain that further appeals will follow. I also have a case of potentially significant value in my office right now whose fate may be determined by how the dust finally settles in this showdown.

The issue here usually presents itself in only the most serious of comp injuries. A situation where an employee suffers a catastrophic injury and is never able to get off temporary total disability. In other words, he or she is in essence a permanat total. Along the way, however, the worker receives a PPD award which entiles him or her to a specific benefit under CGS Section 31-308a.

In this most recent interpreteation of what to do in such a scenario, the CRB seems to take the view that the 31-308 permanency award is subsumed by the weeks of TT that roll by over that period of time that the permananency would have been due.

I have a problem with this.

As I understand it, 31-308 PPD benefits, as defined in the Statutes, shall be paid "in addition to" any other benefits. How then, can gthe CRB conclude that just because a claimant never got off TT, he or she is no longer entitlked to receive this "addition"?

As I say, I suspect an appeal to the Supreme Court will be coming. In the meantime, I'm not planning on wrting off that case in my office just yet...