Over 2 million people apply for Social Security Disability Insurance benefits (SSDI) every year. On the average year, only 49 % of first-time claims are approved. Some denials occur because of medical issues while others are due to technical errors, like mistakes on the application. If your SSDI claim was denied, don’t give up! This may not be the end of your claim. However, you need to know how to get from denial to approval.
What does it mean when your claim is denied?
It means that for some reason the Social Security Administration (SSA) found something wrong with your claim. To qualify for SSDI benefits, you must:
- Have earned enough work credits;
- Have earned your work credits during a certain time period before the onset of your disability; and
- Be able to prove that you have a totaling disabling condition that prevents you from working.
If claim was denied, it’s probably because you did not meet one of these requirements. Common reasons for rejection of an SSDI claim include:
- Lacking solid medical evidence of a disability;
- Failing to get and continue treatment for the medical condition you claim is a disability;
- Refusing to work with the SSA caseworker reviewing your claim; and
- Not having enough work credits or work credits are not recent enough.
What should you do next?
Giving up is usually not an option. If you are unable to work because of a disability, you need a way to replace your income.
First, review your denial letter very carefully. This letter usually explains why your application was denied.
Then talk to an attorney about your options. Even if you applied for SSDI benefits without an attorney, it’s best to use an experience SSDI lawyer for your appeal.
- The first level of appeal is the Request for Reconsideration. You’re just asking the SSA to look back over your application and see if it should have been approved.
- If this step fails, you may ask for an administrative law judge hearing. Almost 50% of appeals are approved at this level. However, if your claim is not approved, you still have options.
- You can ask for the Appeals Council to review your SSDI claim. If rejected, there’s one more level of appeal.
- The final step is to file a lawsuit in the United States District Court. You will be asking a federal judge to review your claim. Sometimes the judge will approve the claim. Other times, the judge may send a claim back to the SSA for further review.
If your SSDI Claim Was Denied, Give us a Call.
Get the help of an experienced Social Security attorney. The Social Security Disability Insurance application process can be long and frustrating. You need someone on your side who understands the system.
The attorneys at The Law Offices of Martin Taller have helped many clients receive the disability benefits they deserve. For a free consultation, call us at 714-385-8100. Though our office is located in Anaheim, we assist clients throughout Southern California.