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Office of Disability Adjudication and Review

Volume I

Transmittal No. I-2-168

Chapter: I-2-2

Subject: Issues Before the Administrative Law Judge


This transmittal adds section I-2-2-42 to the Hearings, Appeals and Litigation Law (HALLEX) manual to provide instructions to an administrative law judge (ALJ) for handling cases involving a borderline age issue.

Explanation of Content and Changes

HALLEX I-2-2-42, titled “Borderline Age,” is organized as follows:

I-2-2-42 A – We titled the subsection “General,” and explained that the Social Security Administration (SSA) does not apply age categories mechanically in a borderline age situation. We also explained when SSA will consider using a higher age category.

I-2-2-42 B – We titled the subsection “Identifying a Borderline Age Situation,” and explained the two-part test an ALJ will use to determine whether a borderline age situation exists in a case.

I-2-2-42 C – We titled the subsection “Deciding Whether to Apply a Higher Age Category in a Borderline Age Situation.” We provided detailed instructions on the factors an ALJ will consider when deciding which age category to apply in a borderline age situation. We also clarified that when a borderline age situation exists, an ALJ will address the issue in the decision, regardless of which age category the ALJ decides to apply.

Date: March 25, 2016