Texas residents whose Social Security disability benefits claim has been denied and are awaiting an appeal should take heart from the fact that they are not alone in this boat — there are more than one million people currently awaiting an administrative hearing in front of a judge to appeal their denied Social Security disability benefits. When the Social Security Administration does not approve a person’s application for benefits, it is no surprise that the applicant would want to appeal the SSA’s decision. And according to data released by the SSA, many appeals are accepted.
However, where a denial places a hardship on someone who is already going through a tough time, waiting for an appeal can be an endless process. The wait time for an appeal hearing was less than a year five years ago. Now, however, the wait time for an appeal hearing has swelled to 602 days. The people who are waiting for their hearing are already living with disabilities, and it is not as if the benefits they are going to receive are going to pull their families out of poverty. Unfortunately, some applicants do not survive the wait period, passing away before they ever get a hearing.
Though budget cuts have hit the agency hard, they are attempting to reduce the backlog by hiring more staff and administrative judges. By expanding a program that prioritizes benefits to people who are seriously ill or injured, the process may be streamlined to a certain degree.
Where the outcome of a case depends mostly on the person hearing the case, preparation is often the key to success. It may be beneficial to consult an attorney to discuss strategies that could ensure a successful and complete appeal so that the case is not delayed any longer than necessary.