Does Social Security Have a Time Limit to Decide Your Disability Case?

October 3, 2023

The process for earning Social Security Disability benefits is slow and time-consuming.

As of August 2023, the average wait time was 217 days for an initial Social Security Disability decision and 182 for a reconsideration decision if your initial application is denied.

These are national numbers, and at Nash Disability Law, we see much higher numbers in Illinois. If a claim is denied twice, it takes an average of 11 months for the Social Security Administration (SSA) to hold a disability hearing in Chicago.

After the hearing, you may wait anywhere from several weeks to several more months to receive a decision.

The frustration of waiting on a decision often leads clients to ask if there is a time limit that the Social Security Administration has to decide a case. Or a client will suggest that, “SSA said they have to decide my case in (insert number of days/weeks/months).”

This is a misconception.

There is no time limit, and the SSA can take as long as it wants, even if you have a disability attorney.

While there is not much you can do to hurry Social Security along, there are steps you can take to improve your claim and to avoid unnecessary delays.

Be an active partner with your disability lawyer by providing us with the information we need for success. Complete all the paperwork accurately and in a timely fashion. Keep us up to date on your contact information so that we can reach you when necessary.

Do you have additional questions about the disability application process or the best strategies for winning disability benefits? You can get the answers by contacting the Social Security Disability lawyers at Nash Disability Law for free evaluation of your case.