An On-the-Record (OTR) decision is a favorable ruling that is made by an administrative law judge prior to an actual disability hearing.
The decision is made by the administrative law judge based only on the written medical information. Skipping the wait for an appeal hearing may speed up the process. You must, however, have substantial medical evidence proving the extent of your disability for this approach to be successful.
OTR reviews are available to all Social Security Disability applicants who are appealing a denial of their Social Security Disability benefits based on their written disability application. If you have enough medical evidence to prove that you are disabled you may want to consider requesting an OTR review and decision.
How Do I Request an OTR Decision?
Once your Social Security Disability application has been denied, you have the right to request a disability hearing. You must file this request for a hearing within 60 days from the date you receive the notice of the denial of your benefits. Once your request for a hearing has been filed, you can request an OTR review in one of two ways.
In a best-case scenario, a hearing officer may begin an OTR review for you. For example, if you provide the SSA with new supporting medical evidence that needs to be reviewed, the hearing officer may feel that a hearing is no longer necessary and may submit the information to the judge so that an OTR decision can be made.
If a hearing officer does not initiate an OTR review for you, you can request the review to ensure that it is performed. You can do this by making the request to your local Office of Disability Adjudication and Review (ODAR). You should make your request to the ODAR office shortly after you file your request for your hearing. Your request should include a thorough explanation that points out the specific medical evidence proving your disability.medical documentation to prove your disability to the SSA—showing the administrative law judge that you are indeed disabled and that you should be approved benefits without the need for a disability hearing.
If you have a question regarding your OTR decision, you can ask in our forum here.