Obtaining a Hearing in front of a Judge will take longer than the first two stages of the Social Security process. From the time you file a Request for Hearing, it can take a year or as long as two years to appear in front of a Judge.
Partially it depends on the backlog of cases in the Social Security Hearing Office (known as the Office of Adjudication and Review, known as “ODAR”) in your area. You can check out the delay in your local ODAR by going to this webpage from the SocialSecurity website HERE.
An attorney can be instrumental in helping maneuver though this lengthy process. For example, in my office, we check every file once a month to see how it is proceeding. Also, because I have so many Social Security Disability cases, I have been granted access to a website where I can track all cases at the Baltimore ODAR any time of the day, every day of the year. This helps me provide the latest information to my clients and we can prepare better for their hearings.