Think of a vocational expert as an expert witness, this person is someone who will be called to testify at your disability appeal hearing which is held in the presence of an administrative law judge, you and your Social Security attorney in Michigan. The vocational expert is keenly aware about the current status of the local labor market and he also knows exactly what skills are needed to perform what tasks.
The administrative law judge during the hearing will direct questions at the vocational expert; the judge will ask the expert his or her opinion about what jobs you might be able to do based on the limitations you have. The testimony of the vocational expert is crucial to the outcome of your appeal because his or her opinion carries sufficient weight to determine the outcome of your appeal.
During the hearing both the judge and your Social Security attorney in Michigan will ask the expert questions about your disability as well as your job background and history. The vocational expert will attempt to classify all the jobs you have held to determine if you can still perform any of them and determine if you have any skills which are transferable.
Based on the physical or mental impairments that have been documented in your case file the judge and your attorney will pose a series of hypothetical questions to the vocational expert. Obviously the first question that is asked is can you still do your old job. If the expert thinks you can you can expect your appeal to be denied, however, if the expert believes you can’t do your past job additional hypothetical questions will be asked, primarily questions than can confirm or deny that you can or can’t do other jobs.
The questioning is not one way, your Social Security attorney in Michigan can also ask the vocational experts questions. If the expert identified jobs that are available and he thinks you can do your attorney will try to rule these out by introducing limitations that were left out when asking hypotheticals. The object is to try to get the vocational expert to recant and say that there are no available jobs locally that you can do.
It takes a considerably amount of skill and knowledge when you are questioning and being questioned by a vocational expert. To avoid losing your appeal at the hearing stage, consider hiring a Social Security attorney in Michigan to represent your interests.
Sitting in the presence of administrative law judge and a vocational expert can be very intimidating. You are far better off to hire a Social Security attorney in Michigan to represent you during the appeals hearing.