An administrative law judge from Huntington, West Virginia—David B. Daugherty—has announced his retirement as multiple investigations into his work record continue. Daugherty, 75, came under fire in May when The Wall Street Journal published a front-page whistle-blower questioning why the judge awarded Social Security Disability benefits in nearly all of the cases that he’s decided over the last few years.
Specifically, Daugherty awarded disability benefits in all of the 729 cases he decided in the first half of 2011, and in 2010 he granted benefits to all but four of the 1,300 cases he decided. Disability judges typically approve benefits in about 60 percent of the cases that come across their desks.
The Wall Street Journal reports that as a result of the situation in West Virginia, the approval rates amongst all Social Security Disability judges—and there are about 1,500 of them in the U.S.—have become more closely scrutinized. Among other issues, the agency is now considering putting a limit on the number of cases a judge can decide annually and working toward making it more difficult for judges to assign themselves cases.
Do you think the method by which administrative law judges award disability benefits needs to be refined and better monitored?
If you need help with your Social Security Disability benefits, contact the Social Security Disability lawyers at Fleschner, Stark, Tanoos & Newlin.
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