Social Security Act, section 205(b);

20 CFR, 404.907-404.992, 404.992, 404.993, 404.999a-404.999d, 404.1546, 416.946,416.1407-416.1422, 416.1492-416.1493, 416.1495-416.1499,422.140

TN 1 (03-16)

DI 29001.001 The Right to a Disability Hearing at the Medical Continuing Disability Review (CDR) Reconsideration Level


20 CFR, 404.907-404.922, 404.987-404.993, 404.999a-404.999d, 404.1546, 416.946, 416.1407-416.1422, 416.1492, 416.1493, 416.1495-416.1499, 422.140

Social Security Act, section 205(b);

A. Introduction to the disability hearing at the reconsideration level of the CDR process

1. Reconsideration process notes

This subchapter addresses the disability hearing for CDR reconsideration or reopening processes.

2. Reminder items for the reconsideration process

When reading these instructions, remember:

  • terms such as medical cessations and medical factors include, when appropriate, vocational considerations;

  • references to the disability determination services (DDS) also means the Federal components that process DDS cases and non-State cases (foreign and railroad cases) in a manner similar to the DDS; and

  • the instructions for the disability hearing units (DHU) are in chapter DI 33000.000.

NOTE: Although these procedures apply to the State and Federal disability hearing process, some modifications may be necessary to conform to State business practices. However, modifications may not conflict with the Federal regulations governing the disability hearings.

3. Levels of appeal of a CDR determination

Individuals have the right to appeal an unfavorable CDR determination. There are four levels of appeal:

  1. Reconsideration. This includes:

    • pre-hearing - review by an adjudicative team, or designated person, who was not involved in the initial unfavorable determination; and

    • disability hearing - review within a DHU by a disability hearing officer (DHO).

  2. Hearing by an administrative law judge (ALJ);

  3. Review by the Appeals Council (AC); and

  4. Federal Court review.

These instructions focus only on the reconsideration level.

B. Policy on the disability hearing process

1. Availability of the disability hearing

The disability hearing is available at the reconsideration level of appeal in:

  • CDR medical cessation cases;

  • CDR reopenings that change only the basis for the cessation;

  • Adverse reopenings at the initial level; i.e., cases involving favorable initial CDR determinations which were reopened and revised (to unfavorable or only partially favorable determinations) based on medical factors;

  • Adverse reopenings of cases involving favorable reconsideration CDR determinations which have been reopened and which we propose to adversely revise based on medical factors.

NOTE: For additional information on when the disability hearing applies, see DI 29005.022.