Friday, April 19, 2024

What To Expect At A Social Security Disability Appeal Hearing

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Why Is A Vocational Expert At My Alj Hearing

What Should You Expect at a Social Security Disability Appeal Hearing?

Most ALJs rely on VEs to provide expert opinion evidence to help them determine whether you can do your previous work or other work. The VE does not question you; he or she only responds to the AJLs or your attorneys questions.

Hearings generally conclude with the testimony of the vocational expert. Questions posed by the ALJ to the VE address issues that could be decisive in your case. The judge will raise hypothetical situations to the VE about:

  • what sort of jobs youre capable of, based on your impairments;
  • the types of jobs that you could potentially do based on your age, education, and experience;
  • how many of those jobs exist in the national and local economies;
  • analysis based on transferable skills: .

Your lawyer can question the VE about the types of jobs you can perform. In our experience, vocational expert testimony can often be argued and proven different than what the VE believes.

Likewise, a judges decision can be overturned or sent back for rehearing should that judge fail to consider every impairment that our client suffers from.

As your attorneys, we will see to it that the right questions are asked. We make sure that every symptom, impairment, and combination of impairments you experience, as well as your actual occupational skills and limitations, are properly considered by the VE and the judge.

What Happens After Your Ssd Hearing

After the Social Security Disability hearing takes place, the applicants file remains at the hearing office until the ALJ makes a decision on the case. When the ALJ is ready, he or she will either deny or approve the award of Social Security disability benefits.

If the claim is denied, the applicants file will remain at the hearing office in case the applicant chooses to appeal the ALJs decision. A notice of denial is sent to the applicant with instructions on how to appeal the decision.

If the claim is approved, a Social Security representative will confirm the applicants income eligibility, and will then send a notice of award letter to the applicant informing him or her that the judge approved their benefits. This letter explains how much the benefits will be and when the applicant can expect to receive them.

If you are applying for Social Security Disability Benefits consider the Law Office of Neil H. Good to represent your case. Contact our office online or call # 577-4476.

If Denied File A Request For Reconsideration

If your claim for Social Security disability benefits is denied, the next step is to file a Request for Reconsideration. If you receive a second denial, youll then file another appeal and wait for your turn to have a disability hearing with an Administrative Law Judge .

Statistically, you have the greatest odds of being granted benefits at this step in the process. However, if the ALJ doesnt rule in your favor, the chances that you will be approved for benefits at a later stage are very slim. So its important to do everything you can to prepare for your disability hearing.

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What To Expect At Social Security Telephone Hearings During Covid

In response to the COVID-19 stay-at-home orders by federal and state officials, the Social Security Administration began conducting telephonic Social Security Disability Insurance hearings on an emergency basis.

Our team has now participated in many;of these telephonic hearings.

We are happy to report the hearings we’ve participated in were pretty smooth and without major issues.

Our experience is the Social Security hearing office conducting the hearing will call both the claimant and the representative after having all other parties already connected.

We were given the option of having the claimant already on the line with us and conferencing into the call or having the claimant in our office.

In our cases, our clients decided to participate from their own home, and we decided it best to have SSA connect all parties in case of a connection issue.

The only issue we ran into was when we had to speak to our client confidentially. We needed to speak out of the presence of the judge and off the record.; The conference call was ended and then restarted in a short period of time.

Otherwise, our team did not experience any technical difficulties with the call, the sound, background noise, connections, or participation.

These telephonic hearings do not give a full opportunity for the ALJ to evaluate a claimant like an in-person or on-camera SSDI hearing.; But, they seem to be an adequate substitute given the current crisis.

How Should I Answer The Aljs Questions

What to Expect at a Disability Hearing?

Be truthful and forthcoming at all times. No matter what the ALJ asks at your hearing, you want to answer all questions to the best of your ability. This means you must listen as attentively as you can, so your answer to the judges question is specific.

Keep your answer brief and on point If youre not sure what the judge is asking, ask them to repeat it. Never interrupt, and stay respectful and amiable.

Some claimants want to exaggerate their symptoms and limitations, thinking this will help their chances of winning benefits. This is never a good idea, because the ALJ may believe you are not being honest. The minute that happens, you lose credibility.

Other claimants tend to be stoic and brave and make out like they are more capable of doing activities than they really are. This approach never paints a true picture of your claim.

Just be calm, and be honest in your responses. A clear description of your disabling condition and the effect it has on your life is what you need to portray.

Your disability lawyer will prepare you for the judges questions, help you sort out your questions, and will be at your side to ensure your case is presented with every detail accounted for.

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Consult With A Social Security Lawyer Nj Residents Trust

Going to a disability hearing at the;SSA;can be intimidating for someone who has never gone through the process before. Having a skilled professional help you to prepare can often strengthen your disability case. When seeking Social Security disability tips, you will want to be sure to get them from an experienced Social Security lawyer NJ residents trust. Call Hermann Law Group, PLLC;at 286-3030 today for assistance with your disability case. Hermann Law Group, PLLC knows the experienced and dedicated attorneys you can trust to help give you the Social Security disability tips to strengthen your case. Call today for your consultation!

The Judge Will Question The Claimant

After identifying each person in the room, the judge will read a basic statement of facts regarding your Social Security Disability or SSI application. Most judges will then directly question the claimant.

These questions generally revolve around your medical condition and treatment, your past employment, and most importantly, the limitations that your disability imposes. Keep in mind that your hearing isnt you vs. them the judge isnt trying to prove that youre not disabled.

He or she is simply trying to get all of the necessary facts to make a decision on whether or not youre entitled to disability benefits. Its important that you answer the judges questions honestly dont exaggerate, but dont leave anything out either. Try to provide specific examples of how your disability impacts your ability to do everyday activities.

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Receiving Your Disability Payments After A Successful Appeal

Once youve received approval for your benefits, your file is transferred to a payment processing center. Usually, your payments will start coming in within a month, though there are some cases in which youll see mysterious payments in your account before you even get your approval. Thats not a likely scenario, of course, but it happens. Keep in mind that these trends are only the case if your onset date is more than five months before the date you were approved.

Social Security: Ssd/ssi Appeals Reconsiderations Hearings

What to expect from your social security disability benefits hearing?

As of March 17th: All local Connecticut Social Security offices will be closed to the public for in-person service until further notice due to the COVID-18 pandemic. However, Social Security services are still able to provide critical services over the phone and online.; ;Information is about programs and services are available at

Note: Although all offices are not providing service for walk-in visitors,;individuals may be able to schedule an appointment for limited, critical issues if they cannot get help by phone and if they cannot get the information they need or conduct their business online.


Social Security Disability Insurance and Supplemental Security Income are administered by the Social Security Administration . If you are blind or disabled or over 65 years old, you may be eligible for one or both of these programs. Applications are submitted through your local Social Security office. Many applications are denied at first.

If SSA denies your application for benefits, or decides that you are no longer eligible for benefits, or that the amount of your payments should be changed, you will receive a letter explaining their decision. If you dont agree with the decision, you can ask them to consider your case again.

When and How Can I Appeal?

Can Someone Help Me File an Appeal?

Will My Benefits Continue While My Case is Being Appealed?


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The Judge Will Let Your Attorney Speak On Your Behalf

Following your testimony, the judge will usually give your representative a chance to speak on your behalf, or ask you any additional questions. If your disability attorney has planned to ask you questions, you will know this in advance. If there are expert witnesses present, the judge will then ask them for their opinions.

Medical experts will testify regarding your disabling conditions, and vocational experts will provide input as to your ability to sustain employment.

At the end of the hearing, the judge may ask you a few more questions, and will then ask you if you would like to say anything else.

The majority of the time, you wont receive a decision at the hearing it will come by mail 3-4 weeks later. However, occasionally, a judge may issue a bench decision and tell you whether or not theyre approving you before you leave. Even if this happens, youll have to wait for a written decision to be issued before youll begin to receive benefits.

Final Approval When Youre Going To Get Paid For Your Disabilty Appeal

Should your claim get approved by both the judge and a Social Security representative who determined that you arent partaking in gainful work, you will receive an award notice confirming that youre entitled to benefits. This notice will contain all the relevant details to your case including how much money youre entitled to and when you can start expecting that money to show up in your account.

The onset date is one of the most important factors of your final approval. Remember, payments dont start based on the date of your approval. They start based on the onset of your disability. That means youll likely be getting a lot of back pay coming your way. After the judge reviews all the medical evidence, however, it is possible that your onset date will change in your final approval. That will, of course, alter the amount of back pay you receive in total.

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Different Types Of Appeals

Once you have made the decision to appeal a denied claim, youll have access to four different levels of appeals. Lets review;Social Securitys definition;of each type of appeal below:

Reconsideration:;;A reconsideration is a complete review of your claim by someone who did not take part in the first determination. During this process, Social Security will look at all the evidence submitted in the original determination plus any new evidence. Reconsideration can be medical or non-medical depending on the reasons why your claim was denied at the initial step.;

Hearing by an Administrative Law Judge:;If your claim is denied at the reconsideration level, you can request a hearing conducted by an Administrative Law Judge who had no part in the original determination or the reconsideration of your case.;

Appeals Council Review:;If your claim progresses to a hearing with the ALJ and you disagree with their decision, you can request an Appeals Council Review. The Appeals Council looks at all requests for review. It may deny a request if it believes the hearing decision is in accordance with Social Security law and regulations. If the Appeals Council decides to review your case, it will either decide your case itself or return it to an administrative law judge for further review.;

You can find more information about what to do if your claim is denied;here.

If Your Social Security Disability Application And Request For Consideration Has Been Denied The Next Step Is The Hearing Here’s What To Expect

Social Security Disability Appeals Hearing in Madison ...

By Melissa Linebaugh, Contributing Author

Once you have been denied for disability twice , the Social Security Administration allows applicants to request a hearing .

For most disability claimants, this step is their best shot at winning benefits – statistically, the hearing level has the highest award rate of any step in the appeals process. In this article, we’ll answer the most common questions people have to help you understand what to expect.

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What Happens During A Social Security Disability Hearing

Most Social Security disability claims are denied at the initial application stage. These claims can eventually proceed to a hearing with an Administrative Law Judge . Its important to prepare for your hearing.

First, lets revisit the Social Security Disability appeals process for a quick refresher.

What To Expect During A Social Security Disability Hearing In Federal Court

For Social Security disability claimants deep in the appeals process, a Social Security Disability Hearing in federal court is the last stop on the road to obtaining disability benefits. After a claimant is either denied review or denied benefits by the Appeals Council, the claimant may appeal further by filing a civil suit in federal court to be heard before a U.S. District Court judge.

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Write An Appeals Letter

The Social Security forms for appealing a decision give you only a few lines to write your explanation on why you think the decision was wrong, but you should feel free to write the phrase “see attached page” on the form and submit a letter along with the form that carefully outlines the problems you see with the decision.

The denial letter you received from the SSA that denied your eligibility for benefits will include an “explanation of determination,” which is sometimes called the “disability determination rationale.”

This explanation of determination will include issues such as what sources the SSA used to evaluate your claim, why the SSA denied your claim, what impairments the SSA evaluated, and a description of your medical condition. If anything is incorrect or missing in your explanation of determination, include this in your letter to the SSA. Also submit any statements, records, or other information that makes your claim stronger.

For more on appeals letters, see How to Write a Successful Disability Appeal Letter, on

Ssd Claim Denied Let A Trusted Aggressive Ssd Attorney Fight For Your Rights

Social Security Disability Hearing, What To Expect

For decades, we’ve been successfully appealing denied SSD claims. We’re ready to pursue the Social Security payments you deserve as well, including representing you at a hearing if that’s what it takes. We represent our clients at appeal hearings all the time, handling all the paperwork, legal forms and medical documentation required. If you take on an SSD appeal case on your own, it’s very likely you’ll have your SSD claim denied a second time due to common SSD application mistakes or not enough medical evidence.

A Tough Disability Lawyer Can Ensure That Denied SSD Claims are Reversed at the Hearing

Social Security Disability hearings are less formal than typical court hearings, usually lasting less than an hour. The Administrative Law Judge may wear traditional black robes and sit behind a judge’s bench, but an SSD hearing is fairly relaxed and you may dress neatly, but casually. Sometimes SSD hearings are held in a hotel or bank conference room, or may be held via video-conferencing. Whatever format, your SSD hearing can be a key aspect of fighting a denied SSD claim and it is vital that you hire a real Social Security Disability lawyer and not an SSD “advocate.” They may not have the experience and background that you need to get your desired results.

Don’t Go Into an SSD Appeal Hearing Alone-Call an Experienced Law Firm

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When Will I Know The Alj Hearing Outcome

Most judges dont announce their decisions at the end of the hearing. Usually, in about 4 to 8 weeks, the judge will issue a written decision; you will get a Notice of Award in the mail from the judge.

If the judge does issue an immediate decision at the hearing, you will also be sent a formal written NOA in the mail.

The Alj Will Question You

The;ALJ;who is presiding over the hearing will ask you questions that focus on medical history and ability to function. The;ALJ;may verify information on your;SSD;application and ask you how your disability impacts your life. The judge isnt trying to prove that you dont have a disability. Theyre instead trying to determine the extent of severity of any diagnosed medical conditions. You should be completely honest with the;ALJ;about your conditions and how they affect you.

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