If you find yourself in the process of applying for Social Security Disability Insurance, you will likely face an SSDI hearing to determine whether or not you will receive the benefits you need.
Understanding what to expect from an SSDI hearing can help you prepare and increase your chances of a successful outcome.
Notice of hearing
As you pursue the SSDI hearing process, you will first receive a notice of your hearing date and time from the Social Security Administration. The notice typically arrives several months in advance. If you cannot make it to the scheduled hearing, notify the SSA as soon as possible to reschedule.
Preparing your case
In August 2023, 156,748 people applied for SSDI benefits, so after you apply, you need to prepare the best case for your hearing. Gather your medical records, documentation and evidence that support your disability claim. Organize these materials in chronological order to present your case effectively.
Also, gather expert witnesses who can support your claims. The court may also gather witnesses who will ask you questions about your condition.
At the SSDI hearing, you will meet an impartial administrative law judge who will review your case. You and your expert witnesses will testify about your disability and how it affects your daily life. Be honest and provide detailed information about your medical condition, symptoms and limitations. Answer any questions clearly and concisely.
After the SSDI hearing, the judge will review your case and make a decision regarding your eligibility for SSDI benefits. This decision typically arrives in the mail several weeks after the hearing.
Although the decision to grant your SSDI claim ultimately rests on the judge, how well you present your evidence, including how your disability impacts your life, plays an important role.