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
If you get denied on a disability appeal can you get another appeal ?
How to prove you are disabled
and win disability benefits
The simple answer to this question is, yes, you can get another disability appeal. The Social Security disability appeal process is multi level; therefore you may have another appeal for your social security disability claim if you are denied.
If your initial disability claim is denied you may file for a reconsideration of the denial, and your claim will be sent back to the state disability determination service responsible for Social Security disability medical decisions. At this agency, a disability examiner will once again review the medical evidence in the file.
If the "request for reconsideration" has been assigned to a new disability examiner fairly soon after the denial of the initial claim, there will be a reasonably good chance that there will be current medical record documentation in the file.
For social security disability and SSI decisions to be made, there must be at least some current records to evaluate, "current" being defined as not older than 90 days. If there is no current documentation in the file, then the reconsideration examiner will need to request updated records from the claimant's treatment sources and this could significantly delay the decision on the reconsideration appeal.
Note: this is a perfectly good rationale for claimants to get their appeals submitted quickly, ideally the very next day after receiving a notice of denial. Doing so can sometimes help a case by avoiding the "aging out" of its medical evidence.
If your reconsideration appeal is denied
This happens roughly 87 percent of the time. If it happens to you, then you may appeal your claim with a request for a disability hearing. This appeal is initiated very similarly to how a request for reconsideration gets started. If you are represented by a disability attorney, you can have that individual submit your appeal paperwork for you.
Obviously, this is the easiest route to take. Typically, the attorney will send in the appeal and then conduct periodic followups on the status of the appeal as it is being worked on . If you are not represented, contact the social security administration and ask that appeal forms be mailed out to you (you have the option of filing appeals at the SSA website as well).
If you apply for a hearing, it may take a long number of months to be scheduled for a hearing date. This can range from six months to as long as two years depending on the hearing office that has jurisdiction for your case. The unusually long wait time is due to backlogs in the system. At some point, however, your case will be assigned to an administrative law judge who will review your disability claim.
This means that the ALJ will review your medical records and work history to learn about A) what your mental or physical limitations are and B) what your vocational work history reveals about your job skills and, thus, your ability (or inability) to do other tpes of work, assuming that your condition will prevent you from going back to one of your former jobs. After this analysis is conducted, the ALJ, or administrative law judge, will make a medical disability determination.
If your hearing appeal is denied
You may file an appeal to the Appeals Council, the third level of appeal in the SSD and SSI disability system. Relatively few disability claims are allowed at the Appeals Council level, therefore it is often advantageous to begin a new initial claim with Social Security while you wait for an Appeals Council decision (which can take up to 24 months).
Return to: SSDRC, or the Questions, Answers, Tips, and Advice page
Individual Questions and Answers
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