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Depression and not giving up on Social Security Disability

The following paraphrased quote came out of a forum:

"She wasn't denied for disability. She actually tried to start the disability application process several years ago based on depression. Because she was depressed, she couldn't complete the process".

If you've never worked in any aspect of the social security disability SSI system (and that could be as a field office claims rep, as a disability examiner, as a paralegal, or as a disability attorney or non attorney rep), you may not realize it, but many many people do, in fact, give up on their claims. The person cited in this example apparently gave up during the disability application phase. However, a great many people give on their SSD cases and SSI cases after they've been denied.


1. Filing for disability with depression
2. Can I apply for and qualify for disability with depression?
3. Facts about Major Depressive Disorder (Depression) and Filing for Disability
4. Medical Documentation when you apply for disability with depression
5. How do you apply for disability if you have depression?

As an examiner, it was not out of the norm for me to receive cases with "uniques" of 17 or 18. What is a unique? A unique is simply a number on a form (a transmittal form) that indicates on how many separate applications a claimant has filed for disability. Why would you see total unique numbers this high? Generally, when an individual chooses to file brand new applications each time they get denied, instead of filing a disability appeal.

I've stated this many times -- if you keep filing new applications for disability, you will probably just keep getting denied. If you file appeals, on the other hand, you will probably get denied on your first appeal, the request for reconsideration; however, this will allow you to proceed to the next step in the disability appeal process, which is to request a disability hearing. And claimants who go to hearings stand roughly a one in two chance of being approved, with the advantage going to claimants who have representation.

In essence, you should never give up on a disability claim. You should simply file a claim knowing that, statistically, you have a good chance of being denied, but also knowing that if you continue to pursue your claim through the appeal process, the eventual odds of winning disability benefits may actually be in your favor.

Return to:  Social Security Disability Resource Center, or read answers to Questions

Related pages:

Filing an SSI appeal
Social Security disability advocates
Application tip for filing for Social Security disability or SSI
How long to get a Social Security decision letter?
How far back Social Security will pay SSDI or SSI
SSI award notices are received by approved claimants
Filing for disability with sciatica
How does the Social Security Disability Appeal Process work?
Are SSDI and SSI Benefits Normally Continued After A Continuing Disability Review?
Forms to appeal a Social Security Disability denial
Expectations for your disability lawyer
Disability lawyers with high success rates
Can I earn more and get Social Security Disability?
Forms to complete when filing, applying for disability
Eligibility for disability and who qualifies

Information on the following topics can be found here: Social Security Disability Questions and in these subsections:

Frequently asked questions about getting Denied for Disability Benefits | FAQ on Disability Claim Representation | Info about Social Security Disability Approvals and Being Approved | FAQ on Social Security Disability SSI decisions | The SSD SSI Decision Process and what gets taken into consideration | Disability hearings before Judges | Medical exams for disability claims | Applying for Disability in various states | Selecting and hiring Disability Lawyers | Applying for Disability in North Carolina | Recent articles and answers to questions about SSD and SSI

These pages provide answers to basic questions about pursuing disability benefits

Disability lawyer fee - what does an attorney cost?
Social Security Disability appeal status
The status of your social security disability or SSI case
Filing for Social Security Disability or SSI tips
Maximum SSDI SSI Disability back pay
SSI disability back pay
How Far Back Will Social Security Pay Benefits?
What if the SSDI Disability application gets denied?
How to Apply for Disability - What medical conditions
When You File an SSI or Social Security Disability Application
After you file and apply for disability
Applying for disability, the application process
Tips for how to get approved for SSDI or SSI
Social Security Disability SSDI SSI Tips
Proving Social Security Disability for a mental condition
SSDI SSI Eligibility Requirements and Criteria
Qualifying for disability benefits (SSDI or SSI)
How does a person qualify for SSDI or SSI disability, how are they eligible?