As anyone who has had a disability hearing can tell you, it’s not quick process to get to this point.
While wait times still vary dramatically across the country, it’s still not uncommon for some claimants to wait more than two years for a disability hearing.
Understandably, it can be especially frustrating to wait all that time, and then when the big day comes, the hearing gets cancelled at the last minute.
Sometimes, this is out of your control. A judge or attorney falls ill or has a personal emergency. If you opt for an in-person hearing, poor weather can cause a hearing to be cancelled. And even phone and video hearings are sometimes cancelled on the day of a hearing due to technical issues.
For claimants, there are two leading reasons for postponements. The first is lack of medical treatment. Disability decisions are based on medical records. If you haven’t seen a doctor recently, or only saw a doctor once or twice in the past year for minor issues, a judge will often require that you see a doctor paid for by Social Security before making a decision.
The other reason claimants get their hearings postponed is forgetting when the hearing is scheduled. You may get mixed up about the time and show up late. Some people forget to be near their phones or don’t have them charged when a judge calls. While judges usually call multiple times over about 15 minutes to attempt to get a claimant on the phone, if you don’t answer in that period of time, the hearing will likely be rescheduled.
There’s also a chance your case could be dismissed entirely if you miss your hearing time, so it’s very important to keep in contact with your attorney to avoid any unnecessary delays for your hearing.