What is the Application Process for Social Security Disability and SSI?
How do you Win Benefits under Social Security Disability or SSI?
If I am determined disabled, how far back will Social Security pay benefits?
How do you prove your disability case if you have a mental condition?
What Can I Do to Improve My Chances of Winning Disability Benefits
Common Mistakes after Receiving a Denial of Social Security Disability or SSI Benefits
How to File for Disability - Tips for Filing
If You Get Approved For SSDI Will You Also Get Medicare?
How much does a Social Security disability attorney get paid?
Social Security Disability SSI Criteria and the Evaluation Process
How long does it take to be approved for SSI or Social Security disability?
What do you Need to Prove to Qualify for Disability Benefits?
Social Security Disability SSI and Fibromyalgia
Social Security Disability SSI and Degenerative Disc Disease
Can I Qualify For Disability and Receive Benefits based on Depression?
Answers to questions about SSD and SSI disability
What Disabilities Qualify for SSI and Social Security Disability Benefits?
Social Security Disability Status
Social Security Disability Tips — how a claim gets worked on
Social Security Disability, SSI Disability - Terms, Definitions, Concepts
Will Social Security Deny You Disability Without Looking At Your Medical Records?
How to prove you are disabled
and win disability benefits
Social Security can deny your disability without looking at any of your medical records and they can do this for a few reasons. Some reasons apply to both SSI disability and Social Security disability, while others apply to one disability program or the other.
If you are applying for Social Security disability or SSI disability, your disability claim can be denied for the performance of SGA-level work activity (SGA is simply an earnings limit for work activity - if you are able to work and earn this amount or more, you will not be considered disabled).
The Social Security definition of disability states you must have been unable to work, or will not be expected to be able to work, for twelve months due to your disabling condition. If you are working and earning over the SGA limit, your disability claim will be denied without any consideration of your medical records no matter what your disabling condition is.
You can also be denied for SSDI or SSI disability if you fail to provide necessary forms or information needed to send your disability claim for a medical determination. This denial is called a failure to cooperate denial. In other words, you failed to cooperate in the development of your disability claim.
These are the two most common reasons that both your SSI disability and Social Security disability claims can be denied without looking at your medical records. Lets take a look at some reasons that apply to SSDI or SSI disability individually.
Lack of Insurance Eligibility for Social Security Disability
Your Social Security disability claim can be denied without looking at your medical records if you are not insured for Social Security disability. Social Security disability is a disability insurance program based on quarters of coverage (work credits) earned through your work activity. If you do not have enough work credit quarters to be insured for disability benefits, or you have not worked enough in the ten years prior to becoming disabled, your disability claim will be denied for a lack of disability insured status without looking at your medical records.
Non-Medical Denials for SSI Disability
If you are filing for SSI disability, your disability claim can be denied for income or resource limits without a review of your medical records. If you have more income (earnings, pensions, VA benefits, Workman’s compensation, long term or short term disability benefits, etc.) than the SSI income limit, your disability claim will be denied for excess income.
Your SSI disability claim can also be denied for excess resources (land or houses other than the house and land you live on, vehicles (usually your highest valued vehicle is excluded), insurance policies with cash value, inheritance, 401K or stocks, etc. Basically, anything that can be readily converted to cash can be considered a resource for the purposes of the SSI resource limit.
There are other technical denials that might cause your disability claim to be denied without a review of your medical records. However, the vast majority of disability applicants are not denied for both disability programs prior to being sent for a medical determination. Most applicants meet the qualifications for Social Security disability or SSI disability, and many meet the disability qualifications of both disability programs.
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Topics and Questions
SSD and SSI are Federal Programs
The title II Social Security Disability and title 16 SSI Disability programs operate under federal guidelines and, therefore, the program requirements--medical and non-medical--apply to all states:
Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Indiana, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, Wyoming
Recent approval and denial statistics for various states can be viewed here:
Social Security Disability, SSI Approval and Denial Statistics by state
Special Section: Disability Lawyers and unnecessary claim denials