Welcome! This site is written for Social Security disability claimants, for their legal representatives, and for the network of people involved in the Social Security disability claim process. I hope you find it helpful.
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Gordon Gates is a Social Security disability lawyer. He represents clients with Social Security disability and SSI claims in Maine and New Hampshire.

Each year, the Social Security Administration releases statistics about the disability and SSI programs in an easy-to-understand format, called the "waterfall" chart. The waterfall chart shows the percentage of claims approved and denied at the various levels of review.

Here is the latest chart, for FY 2015: 

The chart shows what claimants can expect, statistically, for

It is tax time, and each year I hear from clients who won their cases the previous year and are wondering about the tax consequences of their disability benefits. This topic is particularly important for those who received a significant payment of past-due benefits.

The answer is part of your disability benefits may be taxable.

    I get frequent calls and emails from people who are still working, but are struggling, and are considering Social Security disability.

    Depending upon a person's individual circumstances, this is typically what I say to those who are currently working, but are exploring the disability process:

It is hard to plan for disability. It is unfortunately an

Two administrative law judges are departing the Portland Office of Disability Adjudication and Review (ODAR).

Judge Vickie Evans departs this month. She is transferring to the Mobile, Alabama ODAR, where she will be the Chief ALJ. I wish her well.

Judge John F. Edwards has retired. Hearings already scheduled for Judge Edwards will be heard

Trial work is a concept that applies to people already entitled to Title II disability benefits. Sometimes Title II recipients will attempt to return to work to see how it goes. Social Security encourages this, and allows a 9-month period for a person to still receive disability benefits while testing his or her ability to

The things you tell your doctor about how you are doing (and what you are doing with your time) frequently end up in your medical progress notes. These progress notes provide your doctors with context and information about your condition.

Anyone applying for disability needs to know that those medical notes become part of the

The latest average processing time statistics for Social Security hearing offices around the country have been published by the National Organization of Social Security Claimants' Representatives (NOSSCR).

As of the end of January 2015, the average processing time for the Portland, Maine hearing office is now 443 days, which is just a week