I-2-3-15.Notice of Hearing

Last Update: 7/1/24 (Transmittal I-2-253)

A. When to Mail the Notice of Hearing

Office of Hearings Operations (OHO) management, through designated staff, must send a notice of hearing to the claimant and the appointed representative, if any, at least 75 days before the date set for a hearing, unless the claimant waives the right to advance notice in writing. See Hearings, Appeals and Litigation Law (HALLEX) manual I-2-3-25 for more information about a waiver of advance notice of hearing.

For an amended notice of hearing or a notice of supplemental hearing, OHO staff must send the notice at least 20 days before the date of the hearing. The date of hearing indicated in an amended notice of hearing or notice of supplemental hearing must be at least 75 days from the date we first sent the claimant a notice of hearing, unless the claimant waives the right to advance notice. See HALLEX I-2-3-30 for instructions on sending an amended notice of hearing for a postponement and I-2-3-35 for instructions on sending a notice of a continuance of hearing. OHO staff will also add a copy of the notice of hearing and any notice of amended or supplemental hearings to the B section of the claim(s) file.

Refer to Standard Hearings Operation Procedure (SHOP) section 4.3.1 for mailing guidelines for centrally printed and manually mailed notices.

B. Verifying the Claimant's Address

It is important to check for any update to the claimant's address before sending a notice of hearing. In addition to querying the Case Processing and Management System (CPMS) and the Hearings and Appeals Case Processing System (HACPS), OHO staff will check each of Personal Communications (PCOM) system queries, including:

  • The Full Master Beneficiary Record (FACT) for title II cases;

  • The Supplemental Security Income Display (SSID) for title XVI cases;

  • The Modernized Development Worksheet (MDW) for either title;

  • The Customer Service Record (CSR) for either title; and

  • The Prisoner Update Processing System (PUPS) for either title.


In some cases, newly submitted medical evidence or correspondence may include an address change. Therefore, whenever possible, OHO staff should also check any newly submitted medical evidence or correspondence for a possible address change. Refer to SHOP section 3.2.9 for more information.

To ensure that hearing office efforts to identify the claimant's current address are appropriately documented in the file, OHO staff will create and associate with the B section of the claim(s) file a form SSA-5002 “Report of Contact,” (ROC) documenting that the above-listed queries were run and reviewed. In the ROC, OHO staff will specify the queries reviewed, provide the date they ran and reviewed the queries, and state whether the queries yielded evidence of a new address or other contact information. OHO staff will record any updated contact information in the ROC. In order to protect against any potential disclosure of personally identifiable information (PII) of third parties contained in the queries, OHO staff will not copy, upload, or otherwise include the queries in the ROC or elsewhere in the record.

C. Notice of Hearing Forms

1. In General

OHO staff can generate notice of hearing templates from the Document Generation System (DGS) and HACPS. DGS and HACPS include the standardized notices of hearing to use in all case types, as well as standardized amended notices of hearing and notices of continued hearing.


DGS and HACPS include a Spanish version of each template. See HALLEX I-2-3-45 for more information on when to send a Spanish version of the notice of hearing.

See HALLEX I-2-3-50 for information on special notice options for blind or visually impaired claimants.

2. Special Video Teleconferencing (VTC) and Telephone Considerations

Appropriate notice language options are available in DGS and HACPS for a variety of situations, including situations where hearing participants will appear via VTC or telephone. The available options include:

  • Only the claimant appears before the administrative law judge (ALJ) by VTC or telephone;

  • The claimant and appointed representative appear before the ALJ by VTC or telephone;

  • Only a witness or witnesses appear by VTC or telephone;

  • The claimant and at least one expert witness appear by VTC or telephone (from the same or a different site); or

  • The claimant and all witnesses appear by VTC or telephone (from the same or different sites).

When a claimant is scheduled to appear by VTC or telephone, HO staff will prepare the notice of hearing using the “Remarks” section in DGS or HACPS to advise the claimant whether a witness(es) will appear by VTC or telephone, and that the claimant will hear and speak with the witness(es) through the VTC equipment or by telephone.

3. Appeals Council or Court Remand Considerations

When the Appeals Council (AC) or a court remands a case, OHO management, through designated staff, will ensure that the notice of hearing identifies the issue(s) raised in the AC or court remand order. If the ALJ intends to address a new issue(s) not raised in either the AC or court remand order, the notice of hearing must also identify that issue.

D. Information to Include in the Notice of Hearing

All notices of hearing must include:

  • The claimant's proper name, the Beneficiary Notice Control (BNC) number on HACPS generated notices, whether an expert witness will appear, the HO or National Hearing Center address, and the time and place set for the hearing.

  • A statement of whether the claimant, any party to the hearing, or other witness(es) will appear at the hearing in person, by VTC, or by telephone.

  • If the claimant is scheduled to appear by VTC, the notice of hearing must state that the scheduled place for the hearing is a VTC site and must explain what it means to appear by VTC.

  • If the claimant is appearing by telephone, the notice of hearing must include the telephone number of record that will be used to call the claimant and direct the claimant to call the hearing office immediately if the telephone number included on the notice is not correct.

  • A statement of the issues to be decided and the claimant's right to object to those issues. See generally HALLEX I-2-2.

  • A statement informing the claimant of the claimant's right to designate a representative.

  • A statement informing the claimant that they may be reimbursed for travel expenses under certain circumstances.

  • An explanation of the procedures for requesting a change in the time and place of the hearing.

  • A statement that the ALJ may dismiss the request for hearing if the claimant and the claimant's appointed representative both fail to appear at the scheduled hearing without good cause.

  • A statement that the claimant must make every effort to inform us about or submit written evidence that is not already in the record no later than 5 business days before the date of the scheduled hearing, unless good causes exists for missing that deadline.

  • A statement that the ALJ may decline to consider additional evidence if the claimant informs us of it or submits it to us later than 5 business days before the date of the hearing, unless good cause exists to consider the evidence.

  • A statement of the claimant's right to request the issuance of a subpoena. See HALLEX I-2-5-78.

  • Any other information about the scheduling and conduct of the hearing that the ALJ believes the claimant must have.

E. Documenting the Hearing Information

OHO staff will follow the instructions in SHOP section 4.2 for documenting hearing information in CPMS and HACPS, including the:

  • Time and date of the hearing;

  • Time zone(s) of the claimant and other participants;

  • Site selection, including off-network conferencing, multi-point bridge, or Representative Video Project involvement;

  • Need for a language interpreter under HALLEX I-2-1-70 and I-2-6-10; and

  • Need for a sign language interpreter or real time court reporter under HALLEX I-2-1-72 and I-2-6-12.