SSA now denies over 60% of disability claims, leaving many confused about the reason behind the decision. These benefits are important for people who may not be able to work the same hours as other employees. It’s substantial for these claims to be taken seriously to avoid future issues. Some common reasons include a lack of medical evidence, a lack of work credits, or a technical error in the application. No matter the reason, there is hope for your case. It’s important to look at the different options offered for you to receive the compensation you deserve.
The first step after the denial is to request reconsideration, allowing you to ask the SSA to review the application again. During reconsideration, another individual will review the application and assess whether the initial decision was correct or needs reversal. The reconsideration needs to be filed within 60 days of receiving the denial notice, or it will be dismissed immediately. Here, it’s vital to submit all previous documents and any new evidence that may strengthen the claim. You want to make sure your details are in order so they can have a thorough look at why you need your benefits.
Administrative Law Judge (ALJ) Hearing
If the reconsideration is denied, there’s the option to request a hearing before an ALJ. This ALJ will let you present your case personally and provide additional evidence to support your benefits claim. The filer will have the option of conducting the hearing in person, via a video conference, or over the phone, thus allowing flexibility and convenience. Your judge will review the previous evidence you presented and any new one submitted, including witness testimonies, medical records, and expert opinions. The ALJ will question you directly, giving you a chance to show the personal effects of the disability on your life. However, it is crucial to request the hearing within 60 days of the reconsideration denial to prevent case dismissal.
Appeals Council Review
If the ALJ also denies the request, the next step is to request a review by the Appeals Council. Just like the previous steps, this needs to be filed within 60 days of receiving the notice of ALJ’s decision. The council will assess the decision and determine whether any errors of the law impacted the decision. They will not conduct a new hearing but simply review the existing record presented before. During this, councilors may plan themselves, either approving it, denying it, or sending it back to ALJ for review. They can also deny the request or remand the case to ALJ for additional review.
If this request gets denied, the ultimate step is to appeal to the Federal Court. However, it’s important to choose one of the best disability appeal attorneys, such as those at Marc Whitehead & Associates, as it’s a civil lawsuit against the SSA for incorrectly denying the claim, and several legal requirements need to be met. For this, file the case within 60 days of receiving notice from the Appeals Council. Then, the court will check for any errors or procedural irregularities during the prior stages. If it identifies errors, the case will be remanded back to the agency for review. However, success in such appeals is challenging, and the process is complex and demanding, making legal representation crucial.
Claiming disability benefits can be a demanding task, and over half of them get denied. However, there’s still a chance to follow several steps before giving up. It’s plainly important to hire a competent attorney to guide you through it to maximize the chances of approval. They will review your case and make sure you get the benefits you deserve. It’s in your best interest to reach out to a trusted legal team if you feel something is off. These insurance companies will do what they feel is the right option financially.