I-2-1-5.Conducting Prehearing Case Analysis and Workup

Last Update: 11/14/14 (Transmittal I-2-124)

When a hearing office (HO) receives a case, HO staff (or the administrative law judge (ALJ), if otherwise stated in the referenced citation), will take the following actions:

  • Ensure the claim(s) file is associated with the correct claimant.

  • Assess whether there is a prior claim(s) file. See Hearings, Appeals and Litigation Law (HALLEX) manual I-2-1-13.

  • Determine if there are special handling procedures. See HALLEX I-2-1-55 D.

  • Determine who is a party to the hearing. See HALLEX I-2-1-45.

  • Determine the issues in the case. See generally HALLEX I-2-2.

  • Determine if special notices are required. See HALLEX I-2-3-45 and I-2-3-50.

  • Document whether the claimant has objected to appearing at hearing by video teleconferencing. See HALLEX I-2-0-21.

  • Assess whether there is sufficient documentary evidence in the record for a full and fair inquiry into the matters at issue. If needed, undertake appropriate development. See HALLEX I-2-5.

  • Note whether the case may be appropriate for a decision on-the-record or whether the claimant has waived the right to a hearing. See HALLEX I-2-1-45.

  • Select the proposed exhibits and prepare an exhibit list, if necessary. See HALLEX I-2-1-15 and I-2-1-20.

  • Determine if an interpreter is needed at the hearing. See HALLEX I-2-1-70 and I-2-1-72.

  • Determine if expert testimony is needed at the hearing. See HALLEX I-2-5-34 and I-2-5-50.

  • Determine if the testimony of any other witness is needed at the hearing. For instructions regarding when field office employees can be called as witnesses, see HALLEX I-2-5-71.

  • Give the claimant or the representative the opportunity to examine the claim(s) file. See HALLEX I-2-1-35.

  • Schedule a prehearing conference, if appropriate. See HALLEX I-2-1-75.

  • Schedule a hearing and send a notice of hearing. See HALLEX I-2-3-10 and I-2-3-15.

  • In cases remanded by the Appeals Council, request clarification before scheduling a hearing if the ALJ cannot carry out the directive(s) set forth in the remand order, or the directive(s) appears to have been rendered moot. See HALLEX I-2-1-85.