LARSON, DAVIS INTRODUCE BILL TO OVERTURN HARMFUL TRUMP SOCIAL SECURITY RULE

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April 1, 2021
Statements

Today, House Ways and Means Social Security Subcommittee Chairman John B. Larson (D-CT) and Worker and Family Support Subcommittee Chairman Danny K. Davis (D-IL) introduced a Congressional Review Act resolution to overturn a harmful rule adopted by the Trump Administration. The rule, “Hearings Held by Administrative Appeals Judges of the Appeals Council” (85 Fed. Reg. 73138), changes the Social Security Administration’s (SSA) appeals hearings in ways that compromise claimants’ and beneficiaries’ due process, potentially limit their access to their earned benefits, and contradict the congressional intent of the law governing such proceedings. Specifically, the rule allows SSA to put unqualified agency attorneys in charge of appeals hearings, rather than independent Administrative Law Judges. 

“This harmful rule erodes due process for Americans who are appealing a denial of Social Security or Supplemental Security Income (SSI), threatening access by eligible individuals to essential disability, retirement, and survivors’ benefits,” said Larson. “It is vital we overturn this destructive Trump Administration rule and instead work to make it easier for Americans to access the benefits they have earned.” 

"Every individual deserves a fair, independent consideration of their appeal for Social Security and Supplemental Security Income benefits,” said Davis.  “This destructive Trump Administration rule undermines due process and fails to protect critical benefits by charging unqualified personnel rather than trained Administrative Law Judges with appeals determinations. This bill restores those basic protections and reasserts our commitment to fairness.”

In February 2020, House and Senate Committee leaders called on SSA to abandon the rule.  

In November 2020, Ways and Means Committee slammed SSA’s move to finalize the rule.