If you go on line at SSA.gov, and look under the judge that will be hearing your case, you will see a chart for all Social Security judges. Now, if the Social Security judge that is going to hear your case has a 25% approval rate that may seem pretty bad. Now this is not always the case, since some people file a SSDIB claim but do not show up for court and that is considered a denial that will go under that Social Security judge when he disposes of that case. Some people obtain medical treatment and after a period of time they get better and decide not to pursue the SSDIB claim initially filed. Those type of cases contribute to that same 25% denial rate under that particular judge.
A recently good friend of mine who used to do many SSDIB cases, Foy Horne in Athens Georgia, told me that overall approval rate is about 60 % for Administrative Law Judges. That is a more palatable approval rate. However, that approval rate, said Foy Horne, is based upon quality representation of a lawyer who knows how to handle a SSDIB claim. That number does not represent the people representing themselves nor a new lawyer who is trying to learn how to put together these type of cases.