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Getting a win in front of an administrative judge tough in Philly

Many people in the Philadelphia area may find themselves unable to work because of an illness or injury. Despite oftentimes having a track record of being hard workers at high-paying jobs, these folks will quickly find after a few months of being laid up that they need financial help if they wish to survive.

To get this help, many will turn to the Social Security Administration in order to draw SSDI or SSI benefits, both of which are forms of disability payments that have different eligibility criteria. Applying for these benefits is a complicated and arduous task. Unfortunately, despite one's best efforts, it is fairly common to have an application denied at the initial stages.

According to statistics, residents of the Philadelphia area may also face an uphill battle even when they take the next step of pursuing a hearing in front of an administrative law judge who serves this region. While every case is different of course, many if not most of these judges are fairly quick to deny disability claims and relatively slow to award benefits on reconsideration.

These statistics include all decisions made at a hearing, both when the applicant was represented and when the applicant decided to navigate the process alone. Because many people see reconsideration as the last good chance to get disability benefits, Philadelphia residents need to take these numbers to heart and be prepared for their reconsideration hearings with the best evidence that is most likely to persuade one of the area's assigned administrative law judges. In this respect, having legal assistance may prove to be a game-changer.

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Pennsylvania Bar Association Philadelphia Bar Co-Chair SSD Committee Philadelphia Bar Co-Chair SSD Committee