Can a Dire Need Letter Help You Expedite a Social Security Disability Hearing?

By Michelle Shvarts
Principal Attorney

If your initial claim for Social Security Disability (SSD) benefits is denied and your request for reconsideration is not successful, you must move on to the next stage of appealing a denial of disability benefits. This stage will require you to attend (in person or via video) a Social Security Disability hearing. At the hearing, an Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) considers whether denial of your benefits application was improper.  

It can take a long time (around a year or so) for this hearing to take place.  That is a long time to wait for disability benefits when you have no income coming in. A Los Angeles Social Security disability benefits lawyer can assist you in taking steps to try to expedite the process so you can hopefully get benefits as quickly as possible. One option: sending a Dire Need Letter. 

Will a Dire Need Letter Help you Expedite Your Social Security Disability Benefits Hearing?

A Dire Need Letter is a letter that you submit explaining why your terrible financial circumstances necessitate an expedited Social Security Disability hearing. You will need to provide details on those financial circumstances, such as an imminent threat of foreclosure or eviction because you are not able to pay rent or mortgage due to your lack if income. 

There is no guarantee that your letter will have any impact at all. Hundreds of these types of letters are sent monthly to the Office of Disability Adjudication and Review and it is not possible for every person who is financially struggling to have their hearing expedited. Still, if your letter is convincing and if the right person reads it and is feeling sympathetic, it is possible that you will get your hearing pushed up. In many cases where you have a dire need, it doesn’t hurt to try. 

To find out more about how to prepare for your Social Security Disability hearing and to get help with the process of preparing for the hearing and making a convincing case for benefits, contact a Los Angeles disability benefits attorney as soon as possible after your request for review results in a denial of SSD benefits.

About the Author
Ms. Shvarts is the managing attorney for Disability Advocates Group. She opened Disability Advocates Group to assist individuals who became disabled and unable to work to obtain the benefits they need and deserve.  Ms. Shvarts and the rest of the team at Disability Advocates Group are dedicated to assisting individuals obtain Social Security Disability Benefits (SSDI) and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) benefits.