Social Security TimelineIf you’re like most SSD claimants, getting to the disability hearing has been a long, arduous journey and you’re probably glad it’s over. However, the seminal point remains; what happens to your disability claim and where are you in the Social Security timeline?

Written Decision

Although it does occur, the administrative law judge rarely announces a decision at the hearing. Called a bench decision, it will be read into the record by the judge, and you will typically receive a notice of a fully favorable decision within seven to ten days. More likely, you will receive a notice of the judge’s decision anywhere from a few weeks to up to six months. An Indiana Social Security disability attorney can explain that your case decision may be delayed if newly submitted medical records have to be reviewed or if your case is particularly complicated. The judge can take as long as he or she needs to render a decision.

Favorable Decision

A favorable decision may be either fully or partially favorable. Fully favorable means you were awarded everything you asked for; partially favorable means the judge agrees that you are disabled but disagrees with you as to when you became disabled.


This means the judge feels you are not entitled to SSD benefits, and the decision will contain an explanation of why you have failed to meet SSA’s criteria. Most unfavorable decisions include a discussion of why your treating physician’s recommendations were ignored by the judge.


The reality is that some meritorious claims are denied. If your claim receives an unfavorable decision, you should immediately consult with your Indiana Social Security disability attorney to discuss whether to file an appeal with the Appeals Council.

Contact an Indiana Social Security Disability Attorney for Legal Advice

Understanding the SSD process and preparation are the keys to improving your chance for a favorable decision. For questions at any stage of the Social Security timeline, call the Barnes Cadwell, an association of lawyers and not a partnership Office, an Indiana Social Security disability attorney firm, at (317) 804-5058.