If you do not get approved for benefits at the initial application stage or the request for reconsideration stage, then your claim proceeds to the hearing stage. That means that your claim file is transferred to the local Office of Hearings Operations (OHO). Your medical records obtained thus far by the SSA will be categorized into hearing exhibits and a hearing of your matter will be set. The hearing will involve a judge, a vocational expert, possibly medical experts, a hearing monitor, your representative and yourself. If you are not represented, the judge will ask you questions and consult the experts (on the record) and then dismiss you. If you are represented, your representative will interact with the judge and experts on your behalf. The judge will still ask you questions; however your representative will also present questions, evidence, legal argument, hypotheticals, etc. to the court and the experts to help win your case. If you choose our firm to represent you, we will ensure that all necessary medical evidence is obtained and submitted to the court prior to your hearing. We will also write a brief summarizing your work history, medical conditions and the legal and regulatory arguments that we feel will best win our case.