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How long does it take to get social security after the third appeal?

Lathrop, CA |

the third appeal was filed on 6/22/13

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Attorney answers 4


If by 3rd appeal, you mean you one application has now been appealed to the appeals council, that will depend on many factors. Also, the AC can take 1 month to 18+ months to decide whether to deny your request for review, grant a full reversal and benefits, or grant a remand, where you get a new hearing with your favorite ALJ. Then, you need to finally win your case, so that will depend on whether you have developed yourself a sufficiently strong case.

If you are denied at the AC, you can appeal to your federal district court.... and that is another wait.

Stephanie O. Joy, Esq., of JoyDisability, is an attorney licensed in New Jersey, but currently practicing federal Social Security Disability law in all 50 states from her PA office. Answers to questions are for general purposes only and do not establish an attorney-client relationship, nor do they constitute legal advice. Rather, if you need representation or legal advise, you need to make direct contact yourself, and inquire. We welcome and respond to all phone calls and emails.


Unfortunately, there is no deadline that must be met regarding the decision of your appeal. After appealing to the Appeals Council (AC), two AC judges will be assigned to review your case and this may take 12 months or more. If your appeal was filed in federal court, this decision can typically take 12 months or more also. Given your filing date, you may receive a decision on your appeal this summer. Assuming your appeal is granted, you will usually be given another opportunity to prove your case at an ALJ hearing. If so, your case will be sent back to the ODAR hearing office where another hearing will be scheduled; this will also take several months. To expedite the scheduling of another ALJ hearing, you may provide the hearing office with a dire need letter alleging financial hardship with supporting evidence including home foreclosure notices, utility shut-off notices, and an inability to pay for prescribed medications. A knowledgeable and experienced representative can assist you with these matters. There is also a possibility that the appeals court may find that you are disabled and grant your disability benefits at the time that the appeal is decided. After being approved for benefits, your case will be processed for payment before you start to receive your benefits. Be patient and don't give up the fight for the benefits that you deserve.


I agree with the other answers. There is no exact time line. As a general rule it is 4 months for the first turn down 13 -18 months for a hearing and the a year or two for a further appeal, if your case has been remanded for a third hearing, there is 6 to 12 month wait for a new hearing. These are generalities.

The above answer is based upon the limited facts available and there may be other possibilities. This answer does not mean we have formed an attorney client other words this is advise, but we do not represent you and you are not our client.


As you can tell from the other answers, SSA (and the decisionmakers at the lower levels, known as Disability Determination Services, who are under SSA supervision) has no set timelines. Moreover, the time it takes to get decisions varies between states. In Oregon, it typically takes 4-5 months after you file an initial application to get a decision; then you request reconsideration and it takes another 4-5 months to get a decision; then you request a hearing and it takes 15-16 months to get it scheduled. If you lose at hearing and have to pursue an appeal to the Appeals Council, the time it takes to get a decision can be as short as two months and as long as two years, in my experience.

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