Disability Determination Technician
Positions in this job family provide skilled adjudicative and administrative support to professional Disability Determination Division staff responsible for determining eligibility for disability benefits for applicants throughout the state of Oklahoma under the provisions of the Federal Social Security Administration.
The functions within this job family will vary by level, but may include the following:
- Conducts initial review of diverse and complex Social Security Administration (SSA) disability claims. Identifies deficiencies and contacts Social Security Administration Field Office personnel for resolution.
- Accesses, under SSA security clearance, confidential information such as personal demographics, social security numbers, earnings records, work histories, prior disability filings and medical information using Social Security Electronic Query Systems and Social Security Disability Claims Systems. Identifies, enters and transfers sensitive information electronically to the appropriate destination within the various SSA operating systems.
- Maintains primary responsibility for caseloads requiring limited development at the initial and appellate levels, including disability cases from the Office of Disability Adjudicative Review, Disability Hearings Unit and in areas where cases are developed and await assignment to professional disability staff.
- Assists in caseload management in the absence of professional disability staff and refers cases to program management for final determination.
- Reviews disability allegations and medical evidence of record to determine which disability cases need special handling (suicide/homicide potential, dire financial need, special medical needs, low birth weight babies and terminal illness) and expedites these cases for assignment to professional disability staff.
- Monitors consultative examination providers to ensure that scheduling is correct and medical reports are received timely.
- Arranges for the purchase of medical evidence of record and consultative physical and mental examinations, as well as facilitates transportation for disability claimants. Upon receipt, verifies medical records are complete prior to authorizing payment in accordance with Social Security Administration and Disability Determination Division policies and procedures.
- Performs technical reviews on completed disability cases to ensure compliance with state and federal requirements including the Social Security Disability Program and the Disability Determination Division policies and procedures.
- Interviews and corresponds with claimants, Disability Determination Specialists, attorneys, third party representatives, medical professionals, SSA personnel, Administrative Law Judges and vendors to collect additional information to respond to inquiries regarding various aspects of the SSA Disability program.
- Trains other staff within this job family.
- Performs tasks related to general office operations.
- Performs other duties as assigned
This job family consists of four levels of work which are distinguished by the level of complexity and diversity of the specific job assignments, the level of expertise required for the completion of duties assigned and the responsibility assigned for assisting training and supervising others.
Level I: Code: K12A Salary Band: F
This is the entry level position for this job family and incumbents at this level will be trained in various aspects of the Social Security Disability Program and in Department of Rehabilitation Services and Disability Determination Division policies and procedures. Under immediate supervision, the incumbent will receive training on the SSA computer applications related to the position and will be trained to handle contacts with claimants, representatives, SSA field office personnel and others involved in the disability process. The incumbent will learn to identify medical sources and understand common medical terminology in order to assist in the development and adjudication of disability claims.
Knowledge, Skills and Abilities required at this level include knowledge of spelling, punctuation, and correct English usage; of business mathematics; of recordkeeping systems; of office methods and procedures; of basic computer functions; and of policies and procedures governing the Social Security Disability Program, Department of Rehabilitation Services and Disability Determination Division. Ability is required to establish and maintain effective working relationships; to handle confidential and sensitive information appropriately; to exercise good judgment in evaluating situations and making decisions; to interpret and handle routine matters in accordance with agency policy; and to follow verbal and written instructions.
Education and Experience requirements at this level consist of one year of technical clerical office work, public contact work or an equivalent combination of education and experience.
Level II: Code: K12B Salary Band: G
This is the career level and incumbents at this level, under direct supervision, are assigned work activities within the Social Disability Program including entering, retrieving and verifying information within the various SSA electronic operating systems. As assignment dictates, incumbents will contact claimants and medical sources and will schedule exams under the direction of professional disability staff, will review consultative reports for completeness and will authorize payment for the exam and for claimant travel. Duties also include technical review of personalized denial notices for completed disability determinations and verification that all appropriate notices and SSA pamphlets are assembled for mailing to claimants, representatives and SSA as assignment requires.
Knowledge, Skills and Abilities at this level include those identified at Level I plus the ability to effectively use electronic operating systems within the SSA.
Education and Experience requirements at this level include those requirements specified at Level I plus one year of experience in the Social Security Disability Program at a designated state agency.
Level III: Code: K12C Salary Band: H
Incumbents at this advanced level, under general supervision, are assigned diverse and complex work activities within the Social Security Disability Program including disability case development and processing. Incumbents initiate medical development, arrange for specialized consultative mental and physical examinations and subsequently manage a caseload of disability cases requiring limited development. Incumbents assist with public relations activities, including recruiting new medical vendors and providing oversight for timeliness and completeness of consultative examinations. The incumbent will conduct training for lower level employees. Refers cases to professional staff for developmental action or adjudication using knowledge of case development.
Knowledge, Skills and Abilities required at this level include those identified at Level II plus the ability to gather, assemble and evaluate pertinent information. Incumbents are expected to have good working knowledge of the internal operation of the Disability Determination Division and the policies and procedures of the Social Security Administration, Disability Determination Division and the parent agency. The incumbent must have knowledge of basic disability case processes and common medical terminology and must have demonstrated the ability to communicate effectively and appropriately with staff, claimants, representatives and SSA personnel.
Education and Experience requirements at this level include those at Level II, plus two additional years of experience in the Social Security Disability Program at a designated state agency.
Level IV: Code: K12D Salary Band: I
Incumbents at this leadership level perform duties and responsibilities of the Disability Determination Technician position at all levels of complexity, in accordance with the Social Security Disability Program. At this leadership level and as assignment dictates, the incumbents will be responsible for quality review of disability claims post-adjudication, and will make corrections or return to the Disability Determination Specialist for correction. The incumbent at this level may also assist with special projects which could include but are not limited to, liaison to national DDD offices. The incumbent coordinates division or unit team program activities, both internal and external to the division and may supervise employees at all levels within the job family. In the absence of the Specialist, the Disability Determination Technician would assume temporary oversight of caseload in order to monitor any new developmental issues such as newly receipted medical evidence from medical sources and or claimants and will refer cases to professional staff for final adjudication before appropriately routing cases for clearance.
Knowledge, Skills and Abilities required at this level include those identified at Level III plus knowledge of effective supervisory principles and practices. Ability is required to organize, prioritize and assign work, and determine work flow; to maintain confidentiality; to conduct research on program issues; and to develop and present training.
Education and Experience requirements at this level include those identified at Level III, plus two additional years of experience in the Social Security Disability Program at a designated state agency.