Current hearing practice in light of COVID-19

This post is designed to inform members of how different agencies are handling hearings in light of COVID-19. Please identify your agency.

Comments

  1. Judge Kotval says:

    From Judge Mahoney regarding hearings at HUD:
    All in-person hearings will be delayed if the agency is still on 100% telework, unless the parties agree to a form of video substitute acceptable to the parties and the judge. As judge I am generally comfortable with Skype for business (or better) with a reporter on the line to generate a verbatim transcript. However if the pre-hearing filings indicate credibility of one or more witnesses may be in issue, I am likely to hold out for an in-person hearing. Hearings for HUD and other agencies for which the HUD ALJs conduct hearings, that usually involves travel of the judge, counsel, and some witnesses, so the then current CDC guidelines on travel would apply.

  2. Judge Kotval says:

    Hearings at SSA.
    As of this evening, SSA is holding telephonic hearings only, and only between the hours of 8:30 a.m. and 2:00 p.m. Claimants and representatives are not allowed in the office. There are rumors that as soon as March 30th, SSA ALJs will be able to hold hearings from their residence/alternate TW location, however, that has not yet been confirmed.

  3. Judge Kotval says:

    Shortly after my last post SSA required its ALJs to hold hearings from their residences using SSA provided equipment. Hearings can now end at 4:30 p.m.

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