Forgive my absence for the past week or so. I have been recuperating from an illness. I picked up a bug while traveling and it took me out of the office for a while.
News is out about processing times at ODAR. The number of claims at the hearing level hit the million mark in November of 2014, As of this date, there are over 1,056,071 pending claims at the hearing level. At our offices, we are trying cases where Requests for Hearing were filed in April of 2014.
The Claims pending at hearing level has climbed steadily over the past three years from 13% in 2011 to 35% today. In September 2007, the SSA was at 40% and with no end in sight to a sluggish economy, it seems disabled baby boomers have nowhere else to go. If the past is any indicator, we will see 40% again. Unfortunately, pay rates for ALJs seem to be dropping and the cases need to be better prepared complete with treating physicians’ opinions as to residual functional capacity (See our Site’s Forms Section) in order to have a decent chance of winning a case.