Using Social Media to Deny Claims

For people who need social security disability benefits, the high denial rate can be a discouraging statistic. While some denials are valid and eliminate applicants who are making fraudulent claims, many individuals who are in need of social security disability benefits are denied every day. When considering social security applications, social security agents must follow the due process of law in their investigations. In April 2012, Administrative Law Judges were officially banned from using tools that skirted around this due process, namely, using the social media sites of applicants to deny claims.

If you are applying for social security disability benefits, it is important to have an experienced attorney protecting your interests and representing your rights. Our Indianapolis social security disability attorneys of the Hankey Law Office, are skilled and experienced attorneys who can help you fight for the benefits you need. To speak with an attorney, contact our office today at 317-634-8565.

The Decision to Ban Use of Social Media to Investigate Claims

In April 2012, the Social Security Administration banned its Administrative Law Judges from using the internet to search for applicants’ personal social media pages, such as Facebook and Twitter, in order to gather evidence for denying claims. This decision was based on several arguments, including:

  • Judges might use photos taken before the onset of disability as evidence that applicants did not need benefits
  • The use of information found online about applicants qualifies as ex parte evidence, or evidence that applicants and their attorneys are unaware is being considered
  • Investigation of an applicant online could qualify as a violation of privacy

Although using social media to deny claims may in some cases eliminate fraud, it may just as likely deny benefits to those who need it without the applicant having knowledge of the evidence being considered.

Contact Us

If you are applying for social security disability benefits or wish to appeal a denied claim, an Indianapolis social security disability lawyer at the Hankey Law Office may be able to help you seek the benefits you need. To speak with an attorney about how we can help, contact us today at 317-634-8565.