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SSA logo: link to Social Security Online home  §410.686b Fee for services performed for an individual before the Social Security Administration.

(a) General. A fee for services performed for an individual before the Social Security Administration in any proceeding under part B of title IV of the Act may be charged and received only as provided in paragraph (b) of this section.

(b) Charging and receiving fee. An individual who desires to charge or receive a fee for services rendered for an individual in any proceeding under part B of title IV of the Act before the Administration (see §410.686e), and who is qualified under §410.685, must file a written petition therefor in accordance with §410.686c(a). The amount of the fee he may charge or receive, if any, shall be determined on the basis of the factors described in §410.686c(b) by an authorized official of the appropriate component of the Administration, where the services were concluded by an initial, reconsidered, or revised determination, or by the Bureau of Hearings and Appeals where there is a decision or action by a hearing examiner or the Appeals Council of the Social Security Administration, as the case may be. Every such fee which is charged or received must be approved as provided in this section and no fee shall be charged or received which is in excess of the amount so approved. This rule shall be applicable whether the fee is charged to or received from a party to the proceeding or someone else. Pursuant to section 206(a) of the Social Security Act, in the case of a representative qualified as an attorney under §410.685(a), the Administration may certify the amount of such fee, subject to the limitations in §410.686d(b), for payment out of, but not in addition to, the amount of past-due benefits payable.

(c) Past-due benefits defined. The term past-due benefits as used in paragraph (b) of this section means the total accumulated amount of benefits payable under part B of title IV of the Act by reason of the favorable determination through the month prior to the month such determination is effectuated.

(d) Notice of fee determination. Written notice of a fee determination made in accordance with paragraph (b) of this section shall be mailed to the representative and the claimant at their last known addresses. Such notice shall inform the parties of the amount of the fee authorized, the basis of the determination, the fact that the Administration assumes no responsibility for payment except that pursuant to section 206(a) of the Social Security Act the Administration may certify payment to an attorney, and that each party may request an administrative review of the determination within 30 days of the date of the notice.

(e) Administrative review of fee determination—(1) Request timely filed. Administrative review of a fee determination will be granted if either the representative or the claimant files a written request for such review at an office of the Social Security Administration within 30 days after the date of the notice of the fee determination. The party requesting the review shall send a copy of the request to the other party. An authorized official of the Social Security Administration who did not participate in the fee determination in question will review the determination. Written notice of the decision made on the administrative review shall be mailed to the representative and the claimant at their last known addresses.

(2) Request not timely filed. Where the representative or the claimant files a request for administrative review, in accordance with paragraph (e)(1) of this subsection, but files such request more than 30 days after the date of the notice of the fee determination, the person making the request shall state in writing the reasons why it was not filed within the 30-day period. The Social Security Administration will grant the review only if it determines that there was good cause for not filing the request timely. For purposes of this section, good cause is defined as any circumstance or event which would prevent the representative or the claimant from filing the request for review within such 30-day period or would impede his efforts to do so. Examples of such circumstances include the following:

(i) The representative or claimant was seriously ill or had a physical or mental impairment and such illness prevented him from contacting the Social Security Administration in person or in writing;

(ii) There was a death or serious illness in the individual's family;

(iii) Pertinent records were destroyed by fire or other accidental cause;

(iv) The representative or claimant was furnished incorrect or incomplete information by the Social Security Administration about his right to request review;

(v) The individual failed to receive timely notice of the fee determination;

(vi) The individual transmitted the request to another government agency in good faith within such 30-day period and the request did not reach the Social Security Administration until after such period had expired.

[37 FR 17708, Aug. 30, 1972, as amended at 41 FR 10425, Mar. 11, 1976]

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Last reviewed or modified Thursday Sep 21, 2006

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