How long is the wait for an ALJ Hearing?

As of January 2019, Social Security has released data on the average wait time from the time an Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) hearing is requested, until the ALJ hearing is held. This is the time that a person has to wait AFTER they have been denied the initial application and after they have filed a Request for Reconsideration and been denied.

As you can see from the table below, the quickest average wait time is 8 months. (While you are unable to work and waiting on your benefits, that is not quick.) The Tulsa office has an average wait time of 14 months. Although this may seem like a long delay, it is much worse in other areas such as Los Angles West having a 22 month wait. The worst wait occurs at the NHC Chicago office where people have to wait 24 months on average to see an Administrative Law Judge. Social Security Administration has approximately 169 hearing offices, so the chart is a sample.

Hearing OfficeAvg Wait Time in Months
Houston North8
Dallas North11
Fort Smith11
Kansas City11
Oklahoma City12
Los Angles West22
NHC Chicago24

How long is the wait for a Reconsideration decision?

Before you can request an Administrative Law Judge hearing you first must apply, be turned down, file your Request for Reconsideration within the allowed time period and be denied. As a national average, the Social Security Administration has released data on the average processing time in days to determine a Request for Reconsideration as follows:

Disability Reconsideration Average Processing Time (in days) (excludes technical denials)
NOTE: A fiscal year (FY) runs from October-September. For example, October of FY 2015 is October of calendar year 2014.

Fiscal Year
Average Processing Time (days)
2014 108

Social Security disability attorney Todd Willhoite at Willhoite Law PLLC, has helped many people successfully receive their disability benefits. Please call for a free consultation at (918) 341-3101.