After your Hearing
After you go to a hearing, one of 7 things will usually happen. There are three types of decisions on the merits -(1) Fully Favorable, (2) Unfavorable, and (3) Partially Favorable. The ALJ may need more evidence, so there may be a (4) supplemental hearing, a (5) consultative examination, or (6) expert interrogatories. Finally, there is a slim chance the ALJ may (7) dismiss your request for hearing.
ALJ Needs More Evidence
If the ALJ determines they need more evidence and requests an exam, expert interrogatories, or a supplemental hearing, then you should talk to your attorney about how to handle it.
Although we prefer to get decision quicker, this is an opportunity to bolster your claim. It is better than getting an unfavorable decision.
Fully Favorable Decision
If you receive a fully favorable decision (FFD), the ALJ granted you what you asked for. That is great news!
The next step is waiting for information about your payments and information about Medicare.
Nothing in the FFD is bad for you, so even if something (like "date last insured" sounds scary, it isn't!).
Partially Favorable Decision
Partially Favorable means that the ALJ found you disabled, but made some changes. Usually, this means they found that your disability began at a different time than you alleged or that your disability ended at a different time than you claimed.
You may want to appeal a partially favorable decision. You will need to talk to your attorney about your specific situation.
If you receive an Unfavorable Decision (UFD) or a dismissal, it is bad news. It is not the end of the world though.
Talk to your attorney about the ALJ's decision. You can appeal an unfavorable decision or file a new application. Your attorney will help you decide how to proceed with your claim.
There still can be hope after an unfavorable ALJ decision.