Recently I had a prospective client come to my office after receiving an unfavorable decision from an administrative law judge. The claimant was unrepresented at the Social Security disability hearing.
I have now read the decision and reviewed the record, and the claim easily could have been granted at the hearing had there been a little development from a lawyer. A lawyer develops a theory of the case, and then develops evidence in support of that theory of the case. Since the claimant was unrepresented, none of that was done.
I will write an Appeals Council request for review, and it is possible that the claim will be remanded for a new hearing. But if I had been brought in before the hearing, rather than after, the client might already be receiving benefits.
Please, please do not go to your Social Security administrative hearing without a Social Security disability lawyer.