SSA makes progress with electronic filing, IG says
More than half of disability appeals now being filed electronically
More than half of the appeals of disability benefits decisions made by the Social Security Administration are being filed electronically due to the agency’s progress in implementing the iAppeals application, according to a report.
In the first eight months of fiscal 2011, the SSA’s Office of Disability Adjudication and Review recorded 52 percent of appeals filed electronically through iAppeals, up from 30 percent in fiscal 2008, according to the report from SSA's Office of Inspector General released Aug. 22.
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The growth in electronic filing through iAppeals, as well as progress in several other programs, is helping reducing workloads at the agency’s field offices, the report states.
For example, SSA also maintains electronic copies of hearing-related notices in its eFolders application. For at least one type of notice, it generates them automatically, reducing the time spent by hearing office staff members on such tasks, the report states.
“SSA has made progress in its efforts to provide electronic services to claimant representatives,” the report concluded, citing iAppeals, eFolders and other programs.
Future efforts should focus on expanding those services, allowing for online registration, increasing the amount of data available in the eFolders, and reducing the amount of data produced on paper and compact discs, the report said.
Alice Lipowicz is a staff writer covering government 2.0, homeland security and other IT policies for Federal Computer Week.