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Preparing Yourself For The Hearing And What To Know Before You Testify

You've already been denied benefits at the initial application stage.  Several months have passed and the grueling waiting process has lasted almost a year, sometimes longer.  But now the hearing to determine if you qualify for disability benefits has finally arrived.  A Social Security Disability hearing is nothing like the "law and order" courtroom drama you see on television.  While you are still under oath like any other courtroom proceeding, the actual hearing itself takes place in a small room with the Administrative Law Judge, a hearing recorder, sometimes a medical or vocational expert, as well as yourself and an attorney, should you choose to employ one.

The hearing can last anywhere from 15 minutes to an hour depending on the issues in the case.  It's an informal courtroom proceeding and the formal rules of evidence are not typically followed.  The hearing is the claimant's one opportunity to testify in front of a Judge as to why their impairments have prevented them from working.