You have just received a letter telling you that Social Security Disability has your file at the regional hearing office and they will be in touch with you about a hearing, does this sound familiar? It does to many, if not all people who apply for Social Security Disability. Most people phone me and ask, What does this letter really mean? I’m I having a hearing in the next weeks, months, etc. The answer is usually no, most of the time it is many months before you will find yourself before a judge who is assigned to hear your disability claim.
The time between receiving the letter and your disability hearing is a great time to gather and or make Social Security Disability aware of your continuing treatment, or for those who cant afford any treatment, it is a time to see some of the Social Security Doctors, or other health care professionals for the evaluation of your disability. This is also a great time for me to review your records, and before your hearing date write a pre-trial brief.
I prepare a brief for your disability hearing to help point the judge to our strongest medical arguments for your disability claim. It is a brief including your medical records, your history of work, education, and procedural things like when you applied and were denied. It allows the judge to get a snap shot of your case before and during your hearing.
I am often asked, Do I have to say anything? Simply the answer is yes, the disability judge will generally ask you questions about your daily activities, your financial history, your work background, and most importantly your health issues. Honesty in this questioning is crucial to your case, it is never acceptable to answer the judge with anything but the truth. Many times my clients are fearful of some of their answers hurting the claim, and most of their worries are unfounded, honesty is always the best policy at your hearing.
How long until I get a ruling from the disability judge, after my hearing? There is no timeline for a decision, but usually I would say 4 to 5 weeks until a decision will be made. They will send a copy to me as your lawyer, and to you.
These are a few of the things that occure at your hearing for Social Security Disability, should you have any questions always feel free to phone the law office at toll free 1-800-271-2633 or local at 615-308-2633.
Daniel L. McMurtry, Esq.