Help! I’ve been denied by Social Security DisabilityThe pain and problems brought on by your disability had been enough - you thought that it couldn't get any worse. You made the decision to apply for Social Security Disability and went through the difficult application process, and now you find out that you are denied Social Security Disability (link to Blog on denial).
The Social Security disability lawyers at Keefe Disability Law want you to know that you are not alone.
Denials like this happen very often, and the attorneys at Keefe Disability Law help people like you every day.
There are still steps that you can take to qualify for Social Security Disability. The process is not as daunting as it seems.
Let's take a look at some of the most common reasons for a Social Security denial:
- Not following the treatment prescribed by your doctor
- Not getting treatment from a doctor
- Not completing all the forms Social Security asked you for.
If you have been denied Social Security Disability in New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Vermont or Rhode Island (link to News on Denial) for any reason, it may be helpful for you to contact an experienced Social Security Disability lawyer immediately. They can help you with what is called the Appeals Process, which is essentially asking the government to reconsider its decision to deny your application.
After you receive your denial letter, here are the steps that you need to take:
- Discuss with your family and an attorney the reason for the denial. Develop a plan to correct this part of your application. For example, if you were denied because you did not provide the proper documentation, figure out what is still needed and how to obtain it.
- Determine whether or not you want to appeal the decision (try again with the same application).
If you want to appeal the decision, here is what will typically happen:
- You must sign and send a Request for the appeal (either Request for Reconsideration or Request for Hearing) to the Social Security Administration.
- The SSA will review this Request and make sure that the information is correct.
- The SSA will contact you for a disability report and medical records releases if these have not already been submitted.
- Your case is sent to another office for determination of your disability
- Your medical records will be reviewed again
- That office will contact you for any new medical records that may have developed since you filed the Request for Reconsideration.
- The office will review all old and new records.
- The office will make their determination on your disability and either have a face-to-face meeting with you (if requested) or notify you by mail of their decision.
The Different Steps of the Appeals Process
It is important to note that there are four steps to the appeals process, and they must be completed in order. Once you receive an initial denial, this process follows.
Here are the steps, in order:
- Reconsideration: This is where the applicant asks the SSA to reconsider his or her application for Social Security Disability. It can be done online or via mail by submitting the Request for Reconsideration form. The determination will be made by a different person from the previous determination, and the result will be sent to you by mail.
- Hearing. A Request for Hearing by Administrative Law Judge and an Appeal Disability Report can only be filed after a reconsideration denial (or after an initial denial in New Hampshire), and the forms can also be submitted online. You can either opt to meet with the judge face-to-face, or have him or her make the decision without you present. After speaking with you and your attorney, the judge will notify you of his or her decision in writing.
- Appeals Council Review. If you are denied by the judge at the hearing stage, you may fill out the Request for Review of the Decision/Order of Administrative Law Judge form, sign it, and send it in to your local Social Security Office. They will then send it to the central Office of Disability Adjudication and Review in Virginia. That office will review the form and your records and send you their determination in writing.
- United States District Court Case. This is the final step where your attorney could file a case against the Social Security Administration. This can only be done with the help of a lawyer.
Keefe Disability Law Understands
The Social Security Disability lawyers in our office know that the appeals process is probably overwhelming to you, which is why Attorney John Keefe wrote the Seven Costly Mistakes That Can Ruin Your Social Security Disability Claim .
Order it today to find out what you can do to help your appeal, or call us at 888-904-6847 so we can provide you with a free case evaluation. You can also tell us about your situation using our online contact form.