New Timelines to submit new medical evidence or statements
Effective May 1, 2017, the Social Security Administration no longer allows individuals to submit evidence or statements less than 5 days before their hearing unless “good cause” exists. It should be noted, however, that the Administrative Law Judges are typically quite reasonable with this new standard and frequently will permit new evidence to be considered in spite of being less than 5 days if there is a reasonable excuse or explanation for failing to comply with this deadline.
Additionally, the Judges are often very willing to keep the record “open” if there is important major medical testing or procedures which are scheduled to be conducted shortly after the hearing. This permits the Judges to consider medical evidence that actually is generated after the hearing. Understandably, the new medical procedures or tests do need to be conducted within a reasonably short time after the hearing as the Judges are reluctant to keep the record “open” for extensive periods of time.