If you have received a denial at both the initial and the reconsideration level, you will then appeal the decision to the hearing level. This is when you and your representative will have the opportunity to go before an Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) in court. What many people don’t know is that once you reach the hearing level, there are still several steps that must be taken both before and after your hearing date.
Each step is at a certain status. The SSA and your representative’s office will keep you informed of what status your case is in; however, this process can take anywhere from 12-18 months once you are at the hearing level, and your claim will spend varying amounts of time in each status. The SSA has no specific timeframe for each status, and your representative will not be able to tell you exactly how long it will take either. In general, the biggest determining factors in how long your claim will take depends on the total amount of claims the Office of Disability and Review (ODAR) clerk is handling at a time, which office your hearing will be held at, and the complexity of your disability claim. It’s important to note that Georgia, in particular, is backlogged, so all claims will take some time despite in any other factors.
Below, we have listed the most common status updates you will receive and what they mean.
While some claims may not go through post-hearing development or review, all claims will go through each of the other steps. Once the decision writing process is complete, you and your representative will receive a decision in the mail. Your representative’s office will contact you to discuss the decision, answer any additional questions you may have, and tell you what to expect next.
OR Call (678) 203-9893 or use the form below to book an appt, ask a question or request additional information. We respond within 1 business day and often the same day. Don’t hesitate, your questions are welcome!
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