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Attorney: More Of Conn's Clients Will Face SSA Redetermination Hearings

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PRESTONSBURG, Ky. (LEX 18) - The attorney for many of Eric C. Conn's former clients has received information indicating that the Social Security Administration will be subjecting 2,000 additional clients to redetermination hearings.

Conn pleaded guilty to fraudulently obtaining disability and health care benefits for his clients. 

In 2015, over 1,500 clients received letters from the SSA. About 800 of those people lost their benefits, while around 700 kept them.

Conn had been previously accused of improper practice involving his law firm. In October 2013, he was the focus of a Senate investigation. Conn wrote medical reports and paid physicians to approve them without conducting a physical exam of the patients. Judge David B. Daugherty was also convicted of approving Conn's cases for Social Security disability payouts without scrutiny, while psychologist Dr. Bradley Adkins was found guilty of falsifying medical records to secure favorable rulings for Conn's clients.

Two wrongful death lawsuits were filed against Conn after former clients committed suicide when their benefits were cut off.

Attorney Ned Pillersdorf posted that he was contacted by Congressman Hal Rogers who notified him of the news. He warned that the notices should be coming soon.

Benefits will not be immediately suspended until hearings begin in May.

"Those receiving the notices should contact counsel of their choice. We have already begun organizing volunteer lawyers to fight this continued shameful assault against our vulnerable friends and neighbors," wrote Pillersdorf.

Representative Hal Rogers also released a statement, “It is heartbreaking to witness the tragic impact that Eric C. Conn’s fraud scheme continues to have on the lives of people living in Eastern Kentucky, who had entrusted him with this vital source of income. While I appreciate notification from the Social Security Administration, I question the need for additional redetermination hearings while litigation is still pending in the federal court system. That said, I am pleased that the SSA has once again honored my request to ensure disability payments will continue throughout the redetermination process, and also that the notifications will slowly be released to allow attorneys and Administrative Law Judges additional time to process the large influx of cases. As always, my office will be available to answer any questions and to help my constituents through this difficult process in any way possible.”

Conn is back in custody after being captured in Honduras. 

LEX 18 spoke with the victims of Conn's scheme who have lost their benefits. You can read that piece here.

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