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Mathews v. Eldridge

Significance, Due Process Is Flexible, Hearing Should Come Before Termination Of Benefits, Impact


Forrest D. Mathews, U.S. Secretary of Health, Education, and Welfare


George Eldridge

Petitioner's Claim

That an evidentiary hearing prior to the termination of Social Security disability benefits is not a requirement of due process.

Chief Lawyer for Petitioner

Robert H. Bork, U.S. Solicitor General

Chief Lawyer for Respondent

Donald E. Earles

Justices for the Court

Harry A. Blackmun, Warren E. Burger, Lewis F. Powell, Jr. (writing for the Court), William H. Rehnquist, Potter Stewart, Byron R. White,

Justices Dissenting

William J. Brennan, Jr., Thurgood Marshall (John Paul Stevens did not participate)


Washington, D.C.

Date of Decision

24 February 1976


The lack of an evidentiary hearing prior to cutting off George Eldridge's disability benefits did not violate the Due Process Clause of the Fifth Amendment.

Related Cases

  • Cafeteria Workers v. McElroy, 367 U.S. 886 (1961).
  • Goldberg v. Kelly, 397 U.S. 254 (1970).
  • Richardson v. Perales, 402 U.S. 389 (1971).
  • Morrissey v. Brewer, 408 U.S. 471 (1972).
  • Weinberger v. Salfi, 422 U.S. 749 (1975).
  • Califano v. Sanders, 430 U.S. 199 (1977).

Further Readings

  • Encyclopedia of the American Constitution, Vol 3. New York: Macmillan, 1986.

Additional topics

Law Library - American Law and Legal InformationNotable Trials and Court Cases - 1973 to 1980