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Administrative Law Judge

The ALJ's Decision

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Some judges issue a tentative oral ruling at the conclusion of the hearing; but more often, they say nothing at the end except "thank you."

Unfortunately, Social Security doesn't impose a time limit on administrative law judges rendering their opinions. Allow four to six weeks to pass after the hearing, then follow-up with the hearing office on progress of the written opinion. Judicial decisions can come anywhere from a week after the hearing to 9 months later.

The ALJ's "Notice of Decision"will be mailed to you and your representative, if any. If the judge's decision is against you, the notice will explain your right to appeal if you are dissatisfied with the administrative law judge's decision.

If You Lose In Front Of An ALJ, you can appeal to the Appeals Council. See Appealing From An ALJ Decision, and Appeals Council.

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