Social Security Disability Resource Center

Overview | How to Qualify | Applications
Requirements | How long it takes | Back Pay
Mental Disability | What is a disability? | Tips
SSI Benefits | How to Win | Disability Awards
Hearings | Appeals | List of Disabling Conditions

When a Social Security Disability judge reviews your claim

When a person files a Request for Hearing Review, they are asking that an administrative law judge review their disability claim to make a determination as to whether or not they are disabled. But they would not be doing so if the case had not been previously denied so, in essence, a person who files a request for hearing before an ALJ is also asking that the prior denial, or denials, be overturned.

The judge will essentially do what a disability examiner did on the initial disability application. Meaning that the judge will review the medical evidence available to see if you meet or equal a disability listing in the Social Security Disability list of impairments.

If you do not, and most claims do not get approved this way, then the judge will review both your medical evidence and work history (unless you are a child and then school records may take the place of vocational records) to see if you satisfy the definition of disability through the SSA sequential evaluation process which takes into account a personís work skills, age, education, and physical and/or mental limitations.

Cases that go to the hearing level involve a substantial amount of waiting. Hearings are not scheduled immediately and are subject to very long backlogs in most states. This is why the total wait time on any disability claim, from the denial of an application to the holding of a hearing can easily consume three years. This process can also involve a significant wait for someone at ODAR to review your disability case to see if there is a possibility that an immediate favorable decision can be made without the need for an administrative law judge hearing.

If they (generally an attorney adjudicator) determine an allowance is likely, they will refer it to an ALJ for an OTR decision. An on-the-record decision is simply a medical decision based on the information contained in your disability claim file. If the OTR decision is actually an approval, you will not have to go to a hearing.

Bear in mind, on the record decisions are not the rule, but the exception.

If you donít get an OTR approval, your disability claim will be scheduled for a disability hearing with an ALJ. Of course, this is usually what happens in the vast majority of all claims.

At this point, you will just have to be patient it takes time to get a disability hearing, Generally, it takes 12-24 months to get a hearing depended on the backlogs at your areaís disability hearing office.

  • What medical conditions will get you approved for disability?

  • What kind of Mental Problems Qualify for Disability?

  • Which conditions will social security recognize as a disability?

  • Tips for getting Social Security Disability or SSI benefits approved

  • SSDRC Homepage:

    Social Security Disability and SSI Resource Center

    New and featured pages on

    Social Security Disability Requirements

    Social Security Disability list of impairments

    Social Security Disability Application

    Can you get disability for arthritis of the knee?

    How much income can you earn on Social Security disability?

    If you get denied at a disability hearing, can you win later?

    How much can an attorney charge for Social Security disability?

    Can you get approved for disability based on Ulcerative Colitis?

    The Most Basic questions about Getting Disability Benefits

    Social Security Disability SSI and whether or not you can work

    Common Mistakes to avoid after being denied for Disability

    Social Security Disability SSI Questions and Answers

    More Social Security Disability SSI Questions and Answers

    Common Questions about Social Security Disability and SSI

    Winning Social Security Disability or SSI Benefits

    The SSI Disability Benefits Program

    Medical exams for disability claims

    Applying for Disability in various states

    Social Security Disability SSI and Doctors - Yours and Theirs

    Social Security Disability and SSI Claim Reviews

    Social Security Disability SSI System and Benefits for Children

    Denials, Appeals, and Getting a Disability Lawyer or Representative

    What you should know about Social Security Disability and SSI Denials

    Questions about Disability Lawyers and Hiring a Disability Attorney

    Frequently asked questions about getting Denied for Disability Benefits

    FAQ on Disability Claim Representation

    Disability hearings before Judges

    Selecting and hiring Disability Lawyers

    Various Types of Benefits including SSI, Mental, and Child benefits

    Social Security and SSI based on Mental Disability

    Social Security Disability or SSI Benefits for Children

    Disability Benefits through Social Security

    Filing for Social Security Disability or SSI Benefits

    Social Security Disability SSI: Medical Evidence and Records

    Filing your claim for disability benefits

    Eligibility for receiving disability benefits

    Info about Social Security Disability Approvals and Being Approved

    FAQ on Social Security Disability SSI decisions

    The SSD SSI Decision Process and what gets taken into consideration

    Resources on this site

    Social Security Disability, SSI Terms and Definitions

    Previously answered questions regarding SSD and SSI

    For Individuals living in North Carolina

    Applying for Disability in North Carolina

    North Carolina Disability Lawyer

    Related pages:

    List of Impairments for Social Security Disability and SSI
    What Disabilities Qualify for SSI and Social Security Disability?
    What Conditions Qualify For Social Security Disability?
    How does Social Security determine if I am disabled?
    If you are Denied for Disability, Should you File a new Application or File an Appeal?
    What if my application for disability is denied?
    Eligibility and Qualifications for Disability in Illinois
    Applying for disability in Illinois
    Disability Lawyers in Illinois
    Will I Qualify For Disability Benefits in Illinois
    Disability denial in Illinois, when to get a lawyer

    These pages answer some of the most basic questions for individuals who are considering filing a claim.

    Do I need an attorney to win disability?
    How Long Does It Take To Go Before A Judge For Disability?
    Will a Judge give you an Immediate Decision at the Disability Hearing?
    What happens when you go to a disability hearing?
    Social Security Disability SSI and Medical conditions
    Social Security Disability lawyer fee
    Can a lawyer or attorney speed up my disability case?
    When can I expect my first disability check and my back pay check?
    Going to a medical exam for Social Security Disability or SSI
    Filing for disability - How to file the disability application
    Do you need a lawyer to file for disability?
    How Far Back Can SSI Back Pay Be Paid?
    Can you get temporary Social Security disability or SSI benefits?
    The Social Security Disability Award Letter
    Social Security Disability SSI Eligibility Requirements
    How Many Times Will you be denied before You Get Approved for Disability?
    What makes you eligible for Social Security Disability or SSI?
    How to Prove disability and qualify to win benefits
    How to speed up the disability process
    Social Security Disability Back pay and How Long it Takes
    What should you say if you go to a Social Security Exam?
    Maximum back pay you can get from Social Security Disability or SSI
    How to qualify for disability
    What is the Social Security Disability List of Impairments?
    What is considered a disability by Social Security?
    How Long Does A Social Security Disability Appeal Take?
    How does back pay for Social Security disability work?
    Your Social Security Disability Status
    How do you find out if a disability claim has been approved or denied?
    How to check Social Security Disability Status
    Applying for disability, what medical conditions can you apply for?
    How do you prove your disability case if you have a mental condition or impairment?
    How much does disability pay?
    Can I get permanent Social Security Disability or SSI?
    How long will it take to get a disability decision letter?
    Social Security Disability and SSI Medical Exams
    How long does it take to be approved for SSI or Social Security disability?
    How Long to get a Disability Hearing decision?
    How long to get disability benefits after you receive an award notice?
    Social Security Disability and Working
    What makes a person eligible to receive disability benefits?
    How To Get Disability Through SSDI or SSI Approved
    How Much Income Can A Person Earn If He Draws Social Security Disability?
    Partial disability benefits from Social Security
    Can I Qualify For Disability for Depression?