What to Expect at Your Social Security Hearing
After you’ve been notified that the Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) has scheduled your case, you may wonder – what happens at a Social Security disability hearing? Your Social Security disability lawyer can really help you prepare for what to expect. A Social Security disability hearing is very different from what you may have seen on TV, in district court, or at the traffic tribunal.
Your Social Security disability lawyer from Green & Greenberg will contact you before the hearing and discuss what sort of questions the ALJ will ask and what the medical records say about your case. Your Social Security disability lawyer will also help you understand the issues in your case.
At a Social Security disability hearing, there are usually only five people in the room – you, your Social Security disability attorney, the ALJ, a vocational expert (“VE”), and a hearing reporter. That’s it. There’s no gallery, no jury, and no government attorney opposing your case, just you and your Social Security disabily lawyer presenting your case to the ALJ. Some ALJs let your attorney make an opening statement, some do not.
The ALJ will usually ask you a lot of questions about your conditions, about your average day, and about how you can do your activities of daily living. At the hearing, your Social Security disability attorney cannot give you answers or coach you through your testimony. After the ALJ questions you, your attorney will have the chance to ask you questions.
After your testimony, the ALJ will often turn to a Vocational Expert who is paid by SSA to provide evidence regarding the vocational issues in your case. Some of the areas the VE may be asked to address are your past relevant work and the possibility of trasnition to other work in the national economy. economy.
The ALJ almost never announces a decision at the hearing. The written decision is usually mailed to the claimant and the client in about 2-3 months. Once you receive your hearing decision, you should contact your Social Security disability attorney to discuss what the next steps are.
Green & Greenberg has a tradition of excellence, representing claimants in Rhode Island and Southern New England in Social Security Disability and Supplemental Security Insurance hearings for over 25 years. Please contact us toll-free at (844) 331-8989, or at (401) 331-8989, to set up a free case evaluation with one of our excellent paralegals or one of our Social Security Disability attorneys.