If the ALJ decision reopens a determination or decision made on a prior application,
but incorrectly applies the rules of administrative finality, expedite payment on
the current application which was before the ALJ. Prepare an SSA-567 referring the
file after payment to an examiner for preparation of a memorandum to OHO for clarification
of the reopening issue. (See DI 42010.070)
Within 4 years after the date of the initial notice, a prior determination may be
reopened if there is new and material evidence, including hearing testimony. Therefore,
it will be unnecessary to refer the case to OHO for clarification merely because the
ALJ does not provide a rationale for reopening under the rules of administrative finality.
NOTE: If the ALJ misapplies the rules of administrative finality to reopen a prior determination
more than 4 years after the date of the initial notice, i.e., in the absence of error
on the face of the evidence or the other conditions for reopening at any time, action
should be expedited to refer the case to OHO, to ensure that the AC can take action
within the 60-day period for its own motion review.
If the ALJ issues an amended decision indicating that the prior determination is reopened
and revised, prepare an amended award on the basis of the earlier application.