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POMS on Representation “Clarified”

Empire Justice Center April 30, 2020

SSA issued POMS in March 2020 outlining the scope of authority of appointed representatives, including what representatives may and may not do. POMS  DI 03910.025, DI 03910.30, DI 03910.40, DI 03910.50, and DI 03910.60 deal with Scope of Authority of Appointed Representatives, Advising Claimants About Their Right to Representation, Appointment of a Representative, Contacting a Represented Claimant, and When a Representative’s Appointment Ends, respectively.  See page 16 of this newsletter for more on the appointment of representatives, including SSA’s new Form 1696.

On April 2nd, SSA updated POMS DI 03910.025, Scope of Authority of Appointed Representatives, to clarify SSA’s longstanding policy that representatives can delegate the task of completing and filing an appeal. Appointed representatives may not delegate the decision of whether to appeal an adverse determination or decision to members of their staff. Nor may they delegate tasks such as appearing at a hearing, presenting a claimant’s case, cross examining witnesses, and making legal arguments. But there are a number of tasks that they may continue to assign to staff, including developing the claimant’s medical record, or preparing written materials for an appeal.