TN 55 (08-96)

DI 12586.035 The Stieberger Development Period

A. Background

In most cases, the Stieberger DEVELOPMENT PERIOD will begin with the 48th month immediately preceding the date of SSA's receipt of the request for review and end at the point of readjudication. In some cases, however, the DEVELOPMENT PERIOD may start earlier or later than the 48th month. (See C.1, below.)

Application of the DEVELOPMENT PERIOD in cessation cases is discussed in DI 12586.015D.

Finally, there are some instances in which the DDS may have to develop for the entire retroactive period. (See D. below.)

B. Policy -- Documentation

1. General

The FO is responsible for computing the DEVELOPMENT PERIOD prior to releasing the Stieberger case to the DDS. This will be done by using the DEVELOPMENT/PAYMENT PERIOD Worksheet in DI 12586.095, Exhibit 10, or, if available, the PC program.

2. Documentation

The DEVELOPMENT/PAYMENT PERIOD worksheet must be prong filed on the right side of the DIB jacket, just beneath the SSA-831.

C. Procedure

Follow the directions on the DEVELOPMENT/PAYMENT PERIOD worksheet (Exhibit 10, DI 12586.095) or, if available, the PC program, to compute the DEVELOPMENT PERIOD:


  1. Find the date SSA received the request for review in the RESPONSE DATE field on the Stieberger Court Case Alert (Exhibit 9, DI 12586.095). The 48 month chart which appears in DI 12586.095, Exhibit 12 may also be helpful.

  2. If the class member is deceased, see 2., below.

  3. In counting back 48 months from the date SSA received the request for review, DO NOT include:

    • periods the class member was already entitled (even if in suspense) to title II unreduced `A', `HA', `DWB' or CDB;

    • periods of eligibility (even if in suspense) for title XVI;

    • periods of potential entitlement to any benefit above, based on a claim pending at any administrative level or in court, regardless of whether or not consolidation is possible or has occurred;

    • periods covered by a medical denial/cessation decision issued while the class member was not a New York State resident; or,

    • years that the computer earnings query shows annual earnings levels which exceeded the SGA guidelines. (See DI 12586.040 for a complete discussion as to how work activity may affect the DEVELOPMENT PERIOD.)

2. Stieberger Class Member Deceased

Where the Stieberger class member died before the Response Date, substitute the date of death for the Response Date and compute the DEVELOPMENT PERIOD in accordance with the rules in 1., above.

D. Policy -- Developing the Entire Period

1. General

The DDS will develop all the way back to the alleged onset (or the cessation date) in the earliest title II Stieberger claim, or the date claim filed in the earliest title XVI Stieberger claim (or the cessation date), if the following (see 2., below) Section 10(e)(5) exception (taken from the Settlement Agreement) applies. Also, if it is necessary to develop back to the earliest retroactive date, it will be necessary to obtain the prior file(s). If an exception cannot be made under Section 10(e)(5) criteria, a determination is prepared based on the period developed.

2. Section 10(e)(5) Exception

The DDS must develop all the way back to the earliest retroactive date (see 1., above, and DI 32586.095, Exhibit 4) if it is determined at any step of the sequential evaluation process that the individual was not disabled during all or part of the DEVELOPMENT PERIOD, i.e., the 48-month period, plus the period from the date of receipt of the request for review to the present, and one of the following conditions is corroborated:

  • The individual had a chronic impairment during the DEVELOPMENT PERIOD; AND, she/he alleged it was more severe in the past, AND, more information is needed about any earlier acute phase (e.g., rheumatoid arthritis in major joints that was not active during the DEVELOPMENT PERIOD, previously uncontrolled epilepsy or diabetes that was under control during the DEVELOPMENT PERIOD); OR,

  • His/her treating source(s) during the DEVELOPMENT PE