Once you make your Social Security Disability Application through the local office what happens?

In Illinois, the application is sent to Springfield to be reviewed at the Department of Disability Services. Federal employees housed with the State review your medical records, work history and background information to determine whether you meet the definition of disability set forth in the Social Security rules and law. If you are approved the case is sent back to Social Security for payment. If you are denied you must appeal.

Once the appeal is filed the case is sent back to another group of adjudicators in Springfield. They review updated medical information and If you are denied again then another appeal must be filed.

The second appeal is called a Request for Hearing. This sends your file to a place called ODAR. At this stage an Administrative Law Judge will review your medical records and listen to your testimony. This can take up to 2 years for the hearing to be scheduled.

If you are denied after your hearing you have the right to file an appeal before the Appeals Council in Virginia.

Finally, you have the right to appeal to Federal District Court. This does not often happen.

Questions about the process? Feel free to call me, Illinois Attorney Dirk May at 309-827-4371.