Modifications to the Disability Determination Procedures; End of the Single Decisionmaker Test and Extension of the Prototype Test, 63965 [2018-26803]

Download as PDF Federal Register / Vol. 83, No. 238 / Wednesday, December 12, 2018 / Notices Administration, 6401 Security Boulevard, Altmeyer Building, Room 617, Baltimore, MD 21235–6401 Office of the Regional Chief Counsel, Region I, Social Security Administration, JFK Federal Building, Room 625, 15 New Sudbury Street, Boston, MA 02203–0002 Office of the Regional Chief Counsel, Region II, Social Security Administration, 26 Federal Plaza, Room 3904, New York, NY 10278– 0004 Office of the Regional Chief Counsel, Region III, Social Security Administration, 300 Spring Garden Street, 6th Floor, Philadelphia, PA 19123–2932 Office of the Regional Chief Counsel, Region IV, Social Security Administration, Sam Nunn Atlanta Federal Center, 61 Forsyth Street SW, Suite 20T45, Atlanta, GA 30303–8910 Office of the Regional Chief Counsel, Region V, Social Security Administration, 200 West Adams Street, 30th Floor, Chicago, IL 60606– 5208 Office of the Regional Chief Counsel, Region VI, Social Security Administration, 1301 Young Street, Ste. A–702, Dallas, TX 75202–5433 Office of the Regional Chief Counsel, Region VII, Social Security Administration, Richard Bolling Federal Building, 601 E. 12th Street, Room 965, Kansas City, MO 64106– 2898 Office of the Regional Chief Counsel, Region VIII, Social Security Administration, 1961 Stout Street, Suite 4169, Denver, CO 80294–4003 Office of the Regional Chief Counsel, Region IX, Social Security Administration, 160 Spear Street, Suite 800, San Francisco, CA 94105– 1545 Office of the Regional Chief Counsel, Region X, Social Security Administration, 701 Fifth Avenue, Suite 2900 M/S 221A, Seattle, WA 98104–7075 Nancy A. Berryhill, Acting Commissioner of Social Security. [FR Doc. 2018–26858 Filed 12–11–18; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4191–02–P SOCIAL SECURITY ADMINISTRATION amozie on DSK3GDR082PROD with NOTICES1 [Docket No. SSA–2018–0065] Modifications to the Disability Determination Procedures; End of the Single Decisionmaker Test and Extension of the Prototype Test Social Security Administration. Notice. AGENCY: ACTION: VerDate Sep<11>2014 18:39 Dec 11, 2018 Jkt 247001 We are announcing the end of the ‘‘single decisionmaker’’ test, consistent with our notice in the Federal Register in 2016, in which we said that we would end the test by December 28, 2018. This notice also extends the separate ‘‘prototype’’ test until its cessation in June 2020. DATES: This notice is applicable on December 12, 2018. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: William P. Gibson, Office of Legislation and Congressional Affairs, Social Security Administration, 6401 Security Boulevard, Baltimore, MD 21235–6401, (410) 966–9039, for information about this notice. For information on eligibility or filing for benefits, call our national toll-free number, 1–800–772– 1213 or TTY 1–800–325–0778, or visit our internet site, Social Security Online, at http://www.socialsecurity.gov. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Our current rules authorize us to test, individually or in any combination, certain modifications to the disability determination procedures. 20 CFR 404.906 and 416.1406. We conducted several tests under the authority of these rules. In the ‘‘single decisionmaker’’ test, a disability examiner may make the initial disability determination in most cases without obtaining the signature of a medical or psychological consultant. Under section 832 of the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2015 (BBA),1 we are required to end the single decisionmaker test. On August 25, 2016, we announced that we would conclude use of the single decisionmaker test by December 28, 2018. 81 FR 58544. We ended the single decisionmaker test on October 1, 2018, in the 19 States and the territory of Guam that used this test. There were nine States and the territory of Guam that used single decisionmaker as a stand-alone test. The remaining 10 States used single decisionmaker as part of a separate test that we refer to as the ‘‘disability prototype.’’ 64 FR 47218. One feature of the prototype test eliminates the reconsideration level of our administrative review process. We are continuing to make decisions in these 10 States by maintaining the elimination of the reconsideration level, but as noted above, as of October 1, 2018, consistent with section 832 of the BBA, we have been making determinations by using medical consultants in those States with the prototype tests. We will begin phasing out the prototype test in January 2019 in the following five States: New Hampshire; SUMMARY: 1 Public PO 00000 Law 114–74, 129 Stat. 584, 613. Frm 00141 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 63965 New York; Louisiana; Colorado; and in the part of California 2 where the prototype test is currently being conducted. This means that for the residents in these locations who apply for Social Security Disability Insurance Benefits or Supplemental Security Income, or both, and who receive an initial denial determination on or after January 1, 2019, the first step of the appeals process will be to request a reconsideration of that determination. If we deny an individual at the reconsideration step, they may then seek further review of their claim by requesting a hearing before an administrative law judge. We will eliminate the prototype test in the remaining five States (Pennsylvania; Alabama; Michigan; Missouri; and Alaska) by June 26, 2020, at which time the test will end. With the end of the prototype test, we will return to a national, unified disability process that affords all disability claimants the same appeal rights in all States. Nancy A. Berryhill, Acting Commissioner of Social Security. [FR Doc. 2018–26803 Filed 12–11–18; 8:45 am] BILLING CODE 4191–02–P DEPARTMENT OF STATE [Public Notice 10628] 30-Day Notice of Proposed Information Collection: Department of State Acquisition Regulation (DOSAR) Notice of request for public comment and submission to OMB of proposed collection of information. ACTION: The Department of State has submitted the information collection described below to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for approval. In accordance with the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995 we are requesting comments on this collection from all interested individuals and organizations. The purpose of this Notice is to allow 30 days for public comment. DATES: Submit comments directly to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) up to January 11, 2019. ADDRESSES: Direct comments to the Department of State Desk Officer in the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs at the Office of Management and Budget (OMB). You may submit comments by the following methods: • Email: oira_submission@ omb.eop.gov. You must include the SUMMARY: 2 California only includes the Los Angeles North and Los Angeles West branches. E:\FR\FM\12DEN1.SGM 12DEN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 83, Number 238 (Wednesday, December 12, 2018)]
[Notices]
[Page 63965]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2018-26803]


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SOCIAL SECURITY ADMINISTRATION

[Docket No. SSA-2018-0065]


Modifications to the Disability Determination Procedures; End of 
the Single Decisionmaker Test and Extension of the Prototype Test

AGENCY: Social Security Administration.

ACTION: Notice.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

SUMMARY: We are announcing the end of the ``single decisionmaker'' 
test, consistent with our notice in the Federal Register in 2016, in 
which we said that we would end the test by December 28, 2018. This 
notice also extends the separate ``prototype'' test until its cessation 
in June 2020.

DATES: This notice is applicable on December 12, 2018.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: William P. Gibson, Office of 
Legislation and Congressional Affairs, Social Security Administration, 
6401 Security Boulevard, Baltimore, MD 21235-6401, (410) 966-9039, for 
information about this notice. For information on eligibility or filing 
for benefits, call our national toll-free number, 1-800-772-1213 or TTY 
1-800-325-0778, or visit our internet site, Social Security Online, at 
http://www.socialsecurity.gov.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Our current rules authorize us to test, 
individually or in any combination, certain modifications to the 
disability determination procedures. 20 CFR 404.906 and 416.1406. We 
conducted several tests under the authority of these rules. In the 
``single decisionmaker'' test, a disability examiner may make the 
initial disability determination in most cases without obtaining the 
signature of a medical or psychological consultant. Under section 832 
of the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2015 (BBA),\1\ we are required to end 
the single decisionmaker test. On August 25, 2016, we announced that we 
would conclude use of the single decisionmaker test by December 28, 
2018. 81 FR 58544.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \1\ Public Law 114-74, 129 Stat. 584, 613.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    We ended the single decisionmaker test on October 1, 2018, in the 
19 States and the territory of Guam that used this test. There were 
nine States and the territory of Guam that used single decisionmaker as 
a stand-alone test. The remaining 10 States used single decisionmaker 
as part of a separate test that we refer to as the ``disability 
prototype.'' 64 FR 47218.
    One feature of the prototype test eliminates the reconsideration 
level of our administrative review process. We are continuing to make 
decisions in these 10 States by maintaining the elimination of the 
reconsideration level, but as noted above, as of October 1, 2018, 
consistent with section 832 of the BBA, we have been making 
determinations by using medical consultants in those States with the 
prototype tests.
    We will begin phasing out the prototype test in January 2019 in the 
following five States: New Hampshire; New York; Louisiana; Colorado; 
and in the part of California \2\ where the prototype test is currently 
being conducted. This means that for the residents in these locations 
who apply for Social Security Disability Insurance Benefits or 
Supplemental Security Income, or both, and who receive an initial 
denial determination on or after January 1, 2019, the first step of the 
appeals process will be to request a reconsideration of that 
determination. If we deny an individual at the reconsideration step, 
they may then seek further review of their claim by requesting a 
hearing before an administrative law judge.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \2\ California only includes the Los Angeles North and Los 
Angeles West branches.
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    We will eliminate the prototype test in the remaining five States 
(Pennsylvania; Alabama; Michigan; Missouri; and Alaska) by June 26, 
2020, at which time the test will end. With the end of the prototype 
test, we will return to a national, unified disability process that 
affords all disability claimants the same appeal rights in all States.

Nancy A. Berryhill,
Acting Commissioner of Social Security.
[FR Doc. 2018-26803 Filed 12-11-18; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 4191-02-P