The process of applying for, and awaiting a decision, in a social security disability case is a long one. We know it is very frustrating to wait so long for decisions. As of October 2023, the processing time for an application on initial determination is 217 days. The processing time for a reconsideration determination is another 182 days. Once a hearing has been requested, it is months more before it is scheduled.
Oftentimes, a Judge will say at the hearing they hope to have the decision out within 30 days. Many clients will then think this is a hard deadline the Social Security Administration has, however it is not. The Social Security Administration can take as long as they want to issue a decision, and there is nothing that can be done to speed it up.
So what can you do to help ensure you’re decision is issued as quickly as possible? The most important thing is keeping your attorney notified of all medical appointments, so records can be ordered and submitted before the hearing. If the judge is waiting for medical records to come in after the hearing, it will delay a decision being issued.