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ASTRUE v. RATLIFF

Docket No.: 08-1322
Certiorari Granted: Sep 30 2009
Argued: February 22, 2010
Decided: June 14, 2010

Topics:

Equal Access to Justice, Privacy Act, Social Security Act, attorney fees

PartyNames: Michael J. Astrue, Commissioner of Social Security v. Catherine G. Ratliff
Petitioner: Michael J. Astrue, Commissioner of Social Security
Respondent: Catherine G. Ratliff

Court Below: United States Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit
Citation: 540 F.3d 800

Michael J. Astrue, Commissioner of Social Security
v.
Catherine G. Ratliff
Question Presented:

Whether an "award of fees and other expenses" under the Equal Access to Justice Act, 28 U.S.C. 2412(d), is payable to the "prevailing party" rather than to the prevailing party's attorney, and therefore is subject to an offset for a pre-existing debt owed by the prevailing party to the United States.

Question:

Is the "award of fees and other expenses" under the Equal Access to Justice Act payable to the prevailing party rather than the prevailing party's attorney, and, therefore, may be used to satisfy that party's pre-existing debt to the United States?

ASTRUE v. RATLIFF
ORAL ARGUMENT

February 22, 2010

Holding: letter from counsel for respondent propo
Vote: 9-0
Opinion By: Justice Clarence Thomas
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