San Francisco, California ODAR Office

At the Office of Disability Adjudication and Review (ODAR) in San Francisco, California, 8 different administrative law judges (ALJ) conduct Social Security Disability (SSD) hearings and Supplemental Security Income (SSI) hearings. Currently, in San Francisco, the average wait time for a SSI or SSD hearing is 19.0 months. The average case processing time in San Francisco is 606 days.The San Francisco average for winning a SSI or SSD disibility hearing is 46%. Click on the name of one of the ALJs below to see detailed information about their hearing results. This information for the San Francisco ODAR office was last updated on 6/11/2019.

Average statistics
OfficeJudgesAvg. Hearing
Wait Time
Processing Time
Per Day Per ALJ
San Francisco 8 19.0 months 606 days 1.9 23% 46% 31%
California17.1 months562 days2.220%45%35%
National Average:14.9 months500 days2.120%42%38%
Full NameDismissedApprovedDenied

LATEST COMMENTS         to leave your own comment, select a judge from the list above and leave a comment on that judge's page
Latasha Williams
Judge: Elizab Stevens Bentley
8/13/2019 3:21:10 PM

Hello my name is Latasha Williams and I was at the hearing on July 3rd of last month and I don't remember what judge that I had but she was very nice and sweet she understood everything that I told her and she let me talk and everything else I just don't remember what judge that I had but I just hope that I can get good news from her soon bc even the witness was in there saying that I was unable to work bc I'm disabled so i hope I hear something back soon and I hope it's good news please contact me about the decisions that my judge said my number is 714-728-3040 or my email address is I really want to hear from my judge if she has approved me or not

Judge: Mary P Parnow
7/19/2019 6:58:24 PM

I found her to be kind, respectful, thorough, and fair. She was genuinely interested in me and my daily struggles. She listened closely, asked clear questions and even kept me past the allotted time to hear my answers. I was very pleased with the process, with her and my outcome.

Jonathan Bromberg
Judge: William J King
2/21/2019 11:50:01 AM

Judge king was well prepared; he had clearly reviewed the entire file and had read the pre-hearing brief that I wrote. He was courteous to the claimant and he was organized and thoughtful in his questioning. I have no idea how he will rule but I felt my client had a fair and comprehensive hearing.

Judge: Jennifer M Horne
10/1/2018 12:25:20 PM

how can I get in touch , via email with Judge Jennifer Horne ?

Judge: Trevor Skarda
6/20/2018 7:14:15 AM

I appeared before him in December 2017. I was very happy that he had already gone over my records and was able to ask specific questions. He has a rather laid back attitude but his questioning is very direct and professional. He doesn’t waste any time and keeps the hearings short. He issued a partially favorable decision in my case, and I thought the decision was well written and very helpful to my understanding why he changed my onset date. If you are assigned to this judge, don’t fret. Just make sure you are prepared.

Michael Reese
Judge: Trevor Skarda
5/17/2018 9:29:18 PM

So I read all of the comments about this Judge in preparation for a full day of hearings before him. I will say after six hearings that I think the criticisms are unfairly leveled against this ALJ. He knew each case extremely well before they ever walked into his hearing room. He wanted the time in the hearing to be focused on the relevant issues and not, as so many ALJs are prone to, asking scores of ultimately irrelevant questions. He was very cordial to the claimants and even took the time on several of them to thank them for their cases, since we (he, the VHR, me, the VE) were all there to service their case and the system that they worked so hard to pay into. I think the attorneys in Stockton must be trying to keep other attorneys from the area by saying he's so rough (joking), but I found him to be fair and delightful to deal with.

Stan M/ Pugh
Judge: John Heyer
1/25/2018 11:13:29 AM

I dont know where to find my information about back pay. Someone went into my mailbox, again. She always knows what i have in my mail and steals the money or checks if she can. I hope he can read this. I have no other way to reach him. he needs to know this.

Stan M. Pugh
Judge: John Heyer
12/21/2017 10:58:37 AM

He saw with his eyes and heard with his ears. That was all i needed.

Judge: Trevor Skarda
12/15/2015 11:26:08 AM

I had this judge for my hearing; he had some hard questions, but between my statements & medical records, the case was approved. Total time maybe 20 minutes. No complaints!

Gregory Penix
Judge: Susanne Lewald
10/29/2015 1:46:33 PM

Judge Susanne Lewald knows that is was asked to be represented by and attorney or free legal assistance. The free legal assistance office refused to represent me on my hearing so I had to go at it alone. Now knowing that Susanne Lewald knows that I am not a legal expert she knowingly took advantage of that and saw that this was an easy win for her with very little effort. To have a doctor and an vocational expert on conference call while we were in a hearing, how is it that a doctor and a vocational expert can make assumptions about me never having seen or met with me don't have all of my medical records or ex rays. They work with SSI their job is to say nothing is wrong even though the truth is rite their before them. An how can the opinion of the vocational expert Nancy Rynd out way the findings of a Doctor when and where do they do that at really. All jokes aside if I am saying that I have trouble straitening up my back when I am brushing my teeth or just to wash a few dishes then what make the vocational expert think that I can work part time doing assembly work sitting when sitting is a major factor also I'm still using my back along with my right hip being out of place an inch of from where it should be and on pain medications AND IT CLEARLY STATES NO WORK AROUND MACHINERY TOOLS OF ANY KIND. Hello where are their heads at really.

Judge: Evangelina P Hernandez
6/19/2015 2:50:17 AM

Hon.E.Hernandez. Her body language,way she sat,appropriate eye contact & words used,tone,facial expression,calm assertiveness were consistent,Hence, my perception; Judge was not prejudiced bias or angry but patient in control.Hon. E. Hernandez omits power,without abusing it. "Her performance in official capacity, "Brings Honor to title Judge".

Judge: Judson Scott
1/30/2015 5:28:17 PM

He's unfair and lied about my case on his decesion , he took 2 hours with the people ahead of me and when it was my turn he said we had to hurry because he took to long with the people before me and he would not let me look through my case papers that i had brought with me to try and prove certain things , and hes rude , i don't know how he sleeps at night

Michelle Michini
Judge: Mary P Parnow
1/23/2015 7:26:37 PM

She makes me wait five months until she sends me a rejection letter. I am outraged at how low life criminals with prison and drug records who fake schizophrenia to get a free check that goes to the dope man on the first of every month. Check out 17th Street and Imperial Avenue near St Vincent De Paul-Father Joe Villages. When honest people have paid into the system and honestly need help they are continuously denied. I often wonder about people in high positions.

Bay Area Rep
Judge: Katherine Loo
12/25/2014 11:00:46 PM

Unprofessional and rude. Wears crocs and tacky clothes to hearings. She hates the sight of any woman who looks better than her. She has the nerve to criticize people's weight when they are barely overweight. She could lose some weight herself. She really needs to go... She has an ugly personality but it's not surprising, she presents herself like a stereotypical pathetic looking government employee.

Judge: Evangelina P Hernandez
12/7/2014 9:01:03 PM

Judge is perfect at her job listens to your testimony without discrimination of character takes the time to fully understand your medical issue and evidence provided very pleasant and respectful they could not have appointed a better person for this job thank you for your fairness!

Judge: Judson Scott
11/24/2014 12:43:32 PM

I find him honest and up-front, which I appreciate. His job isn't to be "nice and friendly", his job is to make decisions based on law and facts. His wisdom and expertise in many areas (as retired naval admiral, lawyer, judge and not to mention a dedicated husband and father) qualifies him to speak and advise on many subjects. I have followed his counsel on several occasions and have never been sorry. He is fair, yet stands strong on his convictions. Our country needs more judges like Judson Scott!

haydn bronte
Judge: Jennifer M Horne
10/26/2014 2:39:12 AM

Ms. Horne, why did you help an attorney steal $5,000 from my disabled son? Patrick Hartley was suppose to represent my child at a Social Security Disability Hearing and just never showed up. When the judge called him on the phone during the hearing he told her he was in a separate courtroom due to a scheduling conflict. The judge had a clerk check to confirm this but Patrick was no were to be found. We should have known something was off when Patrick declined to meet us to prepare for the hearing. We won the disability case without representation. The complete file with all medical records had already been prepared by us months earlier. Mr. Hartley provided no services at all and a decision was entered against paying Hartley a fee. Without any notice to us Patrick Hartley appealed this decision and succeeded at getting the decision reversed and collecting over $5,000 of my child's disability payments. A signature on the notice of Administrative Review Determination is as follows: Jennifer M. Horne, Acting Assistant Regional Chief Administrative Law Judge on behalf of Caroline Beers Acting Regional Chief Administrative Law Judge. Patrick Hartley provided no services,and did not show up to the hearing yet he petitioned for over $5,000 from my son's back-pay. The only notice we received that Mr. Hartley was attempting to gain access to any money was a notice from SSA the night before the deadline to dispute the decision along with a notice that Patrick had been paid the fee. This is the second time we have experienced a similar incident and suspect this is standard practice in the legal industry. Please investigate.

Judge: Mary P Parnow
9/9/2014 10:07:00 PM

Why does the web sites show mixed comments? If a person doesn't click on site, a person can get the wrong impression of that judge.not right to mix a positive comment with a negative comment. Thats for all judges. Unfair and tricky.

Judge: Mary P Parnow
8/13/2014 3:40:02 AM

I just posted 5 stars for Judge Parnow, let me add ,I had two hearings ( the second a supplemental) and I am waiting for her decision. And I still give her a good rating.. why..because she gave me a good caring vibe.. My only HOPE of change is a answer " if yes" to hear it in court.. then waiting for the letter of confirmation wont be so hard and stressful.. good luck all.

Judge: Mary P Parnow
8/13/2014 3:29:01 AM

I've tried to post before.. let me try again. If your Honest and prepared and deserving, I belive Judge Mary Parnow will rule in your favor. I feel fair and open minded.

Judge: Trevor Skarda
8/8/2014 10:19:02 AM

He is the WORST!!!! I had private doctors do my evals as well as there retarded doctors and he only went with the retarded doctors opinion. I am not mentally disabled, I am physically disabled and all he wanted to focus on was my mental. Therefore DENIED!!! I personally thought they picked up a bumb off the streets of Stockton and told him to play judge when he walked in. Shorts, robe, long greasy straggly long hair. I felt like asking him to please take a shower when he came in. Not impressed at all. Maybe he really does need to go to law school again. At least personal hygiene and professional training. His remark in my denial letter "claimant was well dressed and put together so she can take care of herself". HELLO I am going to court, I thought I should get out of my jammies. Maybe he should take some of his own criticism.

Judge: Thomas J Gaye
5/30/2014 11:59:00 AM

If the record is not complete by the time of the hearing (i.e. you are still waiting for records to come in) you may consider requesting a postponement with this particular ALJ. His approval rating is high and he is a good judge. Just know your file and your theory of the case before going in! (especially specific grid number or listing)

Judge: Nancy Lisewski
5/19/2014 2:09:19 PM

IF you want a fair Judge that listens and ask the best questions about your case, she reads and understands, i been threw alot but i kept on because i have worked, and this judge is differant than the other one i had. shes a great judge i will tell anybody that. thank u judge NANCY FOR YOUR FAVORABLE DECISION ON MY CASE. ITS BEEN A LONG AND HARD ROAD FOR ME.

Judge: Trevor Skarda
5/7/2014 4:38:46 AM

Professional judge with solid statistics. He is not the worse judge in this office or Northern California. Yes, he's very laid-back and no, he's not coddling you. He has to decide how to use the taxpayer's money and he takes that seriously so he will question you about smoking, weight, etc... If obesity aggravates your condition or smoking, why should taxpayers pay for that? I'm not asking that but that is the question the judge will want to know. Or why should we pay this claim for a diabetic who refuses to take his insulin. So judges will ask tough questions. Judge Skarda, like most judges will go with the state's RFC if there are no opinions from treating providers OR opinion evidence from treating provider's based solely on subjective complaints or not consistent with record as a whole. Claimants will view him hardly because they've only seen him once. As an attorney, I can say he's fair and professional, and quite thorough in how he handles his cases.

Judge: Evangelina P Hernandez
4/20/2014 12:48:42 PM

Excellent judge. Fair and thorough. Helps put claimants at ease.

Judge: Judson Scott
4/16/2014 7:48:29 PM

Sounds like an incompetent "judge"

Judge: Trevor Skarda
4/8/2014 2:19:40 PM

ALJ Skarda apparently believes that it is his patriotic duty to save the country money by denying disability claims. I represent claimants in the Sacramento, San Raphael, Stockton, Fresno, and Redding hearing offices, and Skarda is the most conservative ALJ in Northern California. For instance, in one case my client went to hearing in a necessarily prescribed walker. Her medical records were voluminous, with many opinions from her specialists. Despite conflicting medical source statements from my clients specialists regarding her RFC, Skarda gave the VE ridiculous hypotheticals, which were answered by the VE with equally ridiculous representative jobs. In the written decision, Skarda gave controlling weight to the state agency examiner's opinions, despite overwhelming contrary evidence from the claimant's doctors. This ALJ needs to be brought to the attention of The Division of Quality Service and disciplined or removed from the bench.

Judge: Mary P Parnow
3/25/2014 3:25:21 PM

This ALJ used to be a dealer -- for an amended onset you could likely get a win. Now she's becoming quite conservative, denying lots of cases and obfuscating her decisions, even for cases she would have granted a year ago!

Judge: Trevor Skarda
9/8/2013 5:12:30 PM

Christopher Trevor Skarda has let his license to practice law expire from what I saw online, so he must think he has this job for life. He does act snobby and prejudiced. He made sure to ask if I smoke. He also made a big deal of my weight, I felt shamed, then did not consider it a disabling factor or symptom of the disability. Yes, I saw that look of contempt on his face several times during the hearing. A good piece of my disability, mentally and physically, was from physically violent domestic abuse, which was never considered or discussed in my decision letter. I seriously question his ability to decided anything fairly because he seemed more interested in his own biases in the decision letter.

Judge: Brenton L Rogozen
4/19/2013 7:12:17 AM

Judge Rogozen demonstrates knowledge of the law, a clear passion for the subject matter, and IMHO is a compassionate judge. Fair, impartial and results consistent with other cases.

Judge: Judson Scott
4/4/2013 1:27:22 AM

I once saw this control freak berate a claimant for saying they were 3 pounds less than the weight that the record showed. He's a real piece of work.

Judge: Judson Scott
3/30/2013 5:03:43 AM

Judge Judson Scott has got to be the worst control freak I have ever run across. I deal with judges across the country and he is the worse that I have dealt with. He interrupts the attorney's questioning every second sentence as a matter of course. He interrupts any witness testimony that he thinks might be going in a direction he doesn't agree with. He acts like he is the medical and vocational expert as well as the Judge He goes on and on about how much time the hearing is taking and yet it is his interruptions that are causing the problem to begin with. His approval rating isn't horrible but I really believe he has made up his mind pre-hearing and that is that.

Judge: Susanne Lewald
3/26/2013 7:07:06 PM

This judge heard my case. Claims you can do a job that you have to be fully sighted to do. I don't see up, down, or anything to the left. The way you are taking up for her, you are either the judge herself, or her aide. When you spend as much time as I have going to doctor to doctor, 6 eye specialists and countless medical doctors only to have her ignore all your medical evidence, tends to make me think she is not at all fair or reasonable! Social Security's blue book says I am disabled. Even the VR specialist said I had a chance of getting a job if someone wanted to give me one as a favor to me. Then she turns up with the Vr specialist had said there were 36 jobs I could get. Come on, where did that come from???????????

Judge: Judson Scott
3/21/2013 4:47:28 PM

I believe he is one of the rudest judges I have ever been in front of. He belittles the claimants to the point of tears. In addition, he tries to shorten the hearing by attempting to bully the attorneys into not asking follow-up questions because he states the hearing is taking to long. He states all the information is in your brief. Due process is met by letting the claimant have a full and fair hearing.

Judge: Susanne Lewald
3/21/2013 4:28:50 PM

I believe Judge Lewald is fair and knows the record better than most judges. She is always respectful to the claimants and everyone involved in the claim. She is trying to find the truth and is impartial and has an open mind. This is not something that you can say about all Administrative Law Judges that work for ODAR> It may be true that the medical experts are unqualified to be expressing their opinions which often times are the direct opposite of the long time treating physicians(many are retired and not up to date on the latest advances in medicine). As mentioned above the experts are assigned randomly from a National list that is generated by the SSA.

Judge: Jennifer M Horne
3/19/2013 4:07:24 PM

Very kind to clients; very efficient in hearings.

Judge: Thomas J Gaye
3/12/2013 4:50:03 PM

Although arrogant and rude, he actually is right most often. It is more difficult to qualify for disability when you are under 50. That is the law, not just the judge's opinion!

Judge: Judson Scott
3/12/2013 4:47:05 PM

Both comments are true. He's a nightmare!

Judge: Susanne Lewald
3/12/2013 4:40:47 PM

The above comment is untrue. Judge Lewald is very fair and more liberal than many ALJs. She weighs the evidence and comes to sound and logical conclusions unlike many other ALJs. And she has no say in the experts used they are assigned randomly.

Judge: Judson Scott
3/4/2013 4:56:25 PM

As a Medical Expert for many years having dealt with many ALJs from all over the country I find this judge extremely long winded without regards to the MEs time spent on the case & very intolerant of ME interjecting opinions which my counter his . At times it could be offending and questioning the medical judgement which is the domain of the ME It could be resulting in a lack of proper adjudication.

Judge: Nancy Lisewski
2/20/2013 9:45:55 AM

I find her to be respectful to the claimant and the representative. She may not approve many cases but she is professional.

Judge: Nancy Lisewski
2/6/2013 8:06:05 PM

Low-class. Should be disbarred. She is disgusting.

Judge: Susanne Lewald
1/29/2013 3:24:38 AM

This judge seems to be very unfair and unreasonable. Ignores the medical facts of the case. Uses expert opinion people that are unqualified to be making these decisions.

Judge: Mary P Parnow
1/18/2013 1:07:12 PM

She is OK. If you play ball and amend your disability onset, she will likely grant in your favor. However, amending your onset will reduce your backpay substantially.

Judge: Trevor Skarda
1/7/2013 1:03:06 AM

Skarda took the opportunity to insult client during hearing. Not much better with his decision than manners.

Judge: Trevor Skarda
1/5/2013 8:11:04 PM

This judge's decisions should be looked at closely.

quita johnson
Judge: Mary P Parnow
12/27/2012 4:47:31 PM

She have a good heart

Judge: Trevor Skarda
11/19/2012 1:10:13 AM

just my opinion he acts like a know it all brat & dont expect fair decision

Judge: Trevor Skarda
11/16/2012 2:52:24 PM

Even though his approval ratings have improved since he worked in San Jose(70% denied), this is not a judge you want to appear before. Most of his opinion is based on the Social Security doctor's evaluations and not the overall medical record. The problem I see with this is that the Social Security doctors only see the patient once and their opinions are obviously swayed to the benefit of their employer and not the patient.

Judge: Nancy Lisewski
11/8/2012 8:17:32 PM

Brash, rude, and condescending. She has decided the case before you even walk through the door. Disgrace.

Judge: Thomas J Gaye
10/12/2012 9:23:53 AM

Judge Gaye is arrogant and rude, mainly to attorneys. He doesn't really want the attorneys involvement. He is smart. He does review the file. You better be prepared to step up and involve yourself in the hearing or it will be over and you will not have gotten across certain points or questions you needed to make. You need to make sure you make a record because he will make some mistakes, partly because he is dismissive in his attitude. I agree that younger people(under 50) are in trouble in front of him, especially those in 20's, 30's.

Judge: Judson Scott
10/12/2012 9:01:56 AM

Judge Scott is relatively new as an ODAR judge. At the beginning of the hearing, he gives the impression that he is going to be friendly and fair about how the hearing is conducted. Be prepared for unfair questioning. He tries to direct the testimony to go the way he wants it to. By the time he gets to the experts he has pretty much tipped them off about how he feels about the case. He always uses a VE and an ME. He looks for a way to deny the claimant if he can. Be sure to warn your client to pay attention to the questions and don't just go along with what the judge wants you to say

Judge: Benjamin F Parks
9/25/2012 1:31:35 PM

He is one of the most personable, courteous, and reasonable individuals I have encountered in a long time. He is also fair, accommodating, and considerate.

Judge: Nancy Lisewski
9/7/2012 12:58:35 PM

Conducts a quick hearing. Lets the representative do most of the questioning. However, she will find any loophole to deny; especially D & A.

Judge: Thomas J Gaye
9/5/2012 12:19:23 AM

This judge really had me thinking he was going to approve me. He even seemed to show empathy towards my medical conditions. However, when I received his denial letter I saw how feign he is. He told me several times that I was too young. His reasoning for me to be denied was based on the fact that I'm trying to go to school and cling on to hope for my future. I have both severe spinal and neurological problems coupled with depression. This judge was undoubtedly biased towards my age and told me social security was not a scholarship program. He put me down for getting descent grades thanks to the help from the disability resource center at school and could care less that I have worked for over 11 years. Unfortunately I am still disabled and unable to work.

Judge: Nancy Lisewski
8/2/2012 2:44:02 PM

Looks for the legal ways to deny - disregards the person.

Judge: Brenton L Rogozen
6/15/2012 12:35:20 PM

He ranks right up there as one of the most arrogant ALJs I have come across. Showed no compassion in how he dealt with a very mentally challenged client.

Judge: Thomas J Gaye
5/16/2012 8:34:17 PM

Wow! Judge likes to make an entrance. He is condescending and rude to clients, he will allow no opening or closing and no cross on VE unless you speak up. Clearly believes all younger individuals and obese people can work.

Judge: Mary P Parnow
4/30/2012 9:15:06 AM

To clear up the prior post. Her decisions are gutless

Judge: Mary P Parnow
4/30/2012 9:05:34 AM

ALJ is gutless.

Judge: Nancy Lisewski
3/13/2012 1:08:16 PM

Appears to know the file well. Does not request opening statement.