Yesterday I posted an article regarding Congressional hearings looking into the Social Security Disability process.

Some Congress people were complaining about high approval ratings from the Social Security disability Judges, also known as ALJs.

A little over 10 percent of the Judges have approved 75 percent of the cases coming before them.

That has raised some eyebrows in Congress.

Not to worry for those of us who live in Central Illinois.

There is nothing close to that approval rating from the Judges in the Peoria, Illinois ODAR office.

The website I found that tabulated statistics through early June 2013 shows the following approval rates:

ALJ Wilson 31%
ALJ Sarsfield 37%
ALJ Wood 32%
ALJ Rickert 51%
ALJ Thompson 27%
ALJ Flebbe 21%
ALJ Welsch 26%
ALJ Schwartz 39%

This may explain why some of my clients ask me why there are so many people walking around who have been found disabled and they look like they could work.

First of all, Social Security Disability is not based on looks. It is based on medical evidence.

Second, we tend to judge ourselves less severely than someone else.

Finally, the other people probably had one of those 75 percent approval Judges.

It really is a crazy system that produces such a wide variation in outcomes.

Peoria, Illinois is fairly conservative with an overall approval rate of 34 percent, and the Evanston, Illinois hearing office has a 56 percent approval rating.

What is your experience with your ALJ?

Questions about the best way to prepare for your Social Security Disability hearing? Feel free to contact Illinois Social Security Disability Lawyer Dirk May at 309-827-4371.