Reduce the Hearings Backlog and Prevent its Recurrence

The hearings process is a key piece of SSA's disability process, providing the public with an opportunity to appeal an earlier State Disability Determination Services decision.

However, SSA has experienced a growing hearing backlog and increasing case processing times in recent years, causing the public to wait longer for decisions. SSA’s pending hearing backlog grew from about 694,000 cases at the end of June 2010 to approximately 955,000 at the end of June 2014. Average processing time on hearings has also increased from 415 days in June 2010 to 437 days in June 2014.

SSA continues to implement a plan to eliminate the backlog of disability hearing requests and prevent its occurrence. The following reports illustrate our efforts related to the issue.