I-2-6-42.Creating a Hearing Recording

Last Update: 1/14/16 (Transmittal I-2-160)

A. Before the Hearing

Prior to the hearing, the hearing assistant or verbatim hearing reporter (VHR) will ensure the hearing recording equipment is functioning and enter the following information into the automated recording system:

  • The claimant's name;

  • The claimant's Social Security number (SSN);

  • The names of the administrative law judge (ALJ), hearing assistant or VHR (and identification number), appointed representative (if any), and vocational or medical expert (if any);

  • The date, time, and location of the hearing;

  • The type of hearing (disability, overpayment, etc.); and

  • The hearing office (HO) code and hearing site code.

For more information on recording a hearing, see Hearings, Appeals and Litigation Law (HALLEX) manual I-2-6-40 B.

B. During the Hearing

Once the ALJ indicates he or she is ready to go on the record, the hearing assistant or VHR will begin recording the proceedings. During the hearing, the hearing assistant or VHR will monitor the recording equipment to ensure that it is functioning properly (i.e., that the hearing recording is completely audible) and must immediately inform the ALJ of any equipment malfunction. For instructions on recording a hearing, see HALLEX I-2-6-40 B. When the ALJ indicates he or she is ready to go off the record, the hearing assistant or VHR will stop the hearing recording.

C. After the Hearing

After the hearing recording is uploaded or created (see instructions below), HO staff must ensure the hearing recording is audible. Failure to associate the hearing recording in the appropriate format or associating an inaudible hearing recording with the record is a basis for remand from the Appeals Council. See HALLEX I-3-7-14.

1. Electronic Claim(s) File

After the hearing, HO staff will ensure the hearing recording is uploaded to the electronic claim(s) file. Specific media handling procedures, including how to contact the help desk for assistance and how to resolve maintenance issues, are available at ODAR's Digital Recording intranet site. See also HALLEX I-2-6-40 B.3.

2. Paper Claim(s) File

After the hearing, HO staff will download the hearing recording on a compact disc (CD). After the recording is downloaded, HO staff will write the following information on the CD using a permanent ink pen or marker:

  • The claimant's name;

  • The wage earner's or beneficiary's name (if applicable);

  • The SSN;

  • The date of the hearing;

  • The CD number of the total number of CDs (e.g., 1 of 1; or 1 of 3, 2 of 3, and 3 of 3); and

  • The HO code.

HO staff will put the CD in a plastic CD sleeve and place the CD in a CD storage envelope. The CD storage envelope will then be prong-filed on the left side of the paper claim(s) file. HO staff will write the following on the CD storage envelope:

  • The claimant's name;

  • The claimant's SSN;

  • The appointed representative's name (if any);

  • Witness' name and description (i.e., spouse, medical expert, vocational expert, etc.);

  • Date, time, and location of the hearing;

  • The HO code and hearing site code;

  • The claim(s) type (DIB, SSI, child claim, etc.);

  • The type of hearing (disability, overpayment, etc.);

  • The name of the ALJ; and

  • The name of the hearing assistant or VHR (and identification number).

D. Routing of Hearing Recording in a Paper Claim(s) File

If a hearing decision is unfavorable, the CD will remain in the paper claim(s) file in the event the claimant appeals the decision. However, if the hearing decision is fully or partially favorable, the CD will be removed from the file prior to mailing the claim(s) file to the effectuating component. For specific processing instructions, see HALLEX I-2-8-50.