$3,878.45 and that this is 25% of the past due benefits.
The Secretary has since submitted a brief opposing the motion for approval of attorney's fees. She does not challenge the reasonableness of the hours counsel spent before the court. She does oppose any award of attorney's fees for time spent on administrative proceedings, which constitutes about half of counsel's time as listed. Her brief directs us to conflicts among the circuits, and even among the members of this court, over whether to award attorney's fees for representation before the Administration. Cf., e.g., Webb v. Richardson, 472 F.2d 529 (6th Cir. 1972) and Morris v. Social Security Administration, 689 F.2d 495 (4th Cir. 1982); Kemp v. Schweiker, 587 F. Supp. 778 (W.D. Pa. 1984) and Snizaski v. Heckler, 602 F. Supp. 1119 (W.D. Pa. 1985). The rationale behind the opinions favoring the award of attorney's fees by the court for representation before the Secretary and vice versa is that it avoids duplication of effort by attorneys seeking fees and by courts and the Secretary in determining fees. It is also argued to be the simplest method of assuring that the statutory 25% fee ceiling is not exceeded. We do not question the idea that such goals should be pursued by any tribunal as a matter of course. We do not subscribe to this position, however, for two reasons.
The first, and in our view, decisive, reason is the clarity of the statutory language. The provision for fee awards, 42 U.S.C. § 406, is divided into two subsections. Subsection (a) states that:
Whenever the Secretary, in any claim before him for benefits under this subchapter, makes a determination favorable to the claimant, he shall, if the claimant was represented by an attorney in connection with such claim fix (in accordance with the regulations prescribed pursuant to the preceding sentence) a reasonable fee to compensate such attorney for services performed by him in connection with such claim.