Filing a Disability Appeal in Texas

Whether a disability applicant in Texas is filing an appeal on an SSI claim, SSD claim, or on a concurrent SSI/SSD disability denial ("concurrent" means the claim was taken in both programs, which is fairly common) , they have sixty days to appeal their denial.

Actually, they have their sixty-day appeal period, plus five days for mailing, from the date of their Social Security Disability denial notice (the date usually stamped in the upper right hand corner of the notice).

Note: this does not mean that the appeal should be submitted by the 65th day, but, rather, this means that the SSD or SSI appeal must be at the Social Security office by the sixty-fifth day, or an individual's disability appeal could be denied for late filing.

Late appeals

Most Social Security offices are fairly flexible if an individual has a good reason for the late filing of their appeal, however administrative law judges in Texas are not so flexible with late appeal filing. In fact, many administrative law judges deny hearing requests on the basis that the appeal was not filed timely and they may actually do this on the day that the claimant and their disability representative, or disability attorney, show up at the hearing office for the holding of the hearing.

The point should be well-taken: do not send in late appeals because even if the Social Security office accepts a late appeal, the judge assigned to the case may come to a different conclusion many months later (perhaps a year or more later, which means a considerable amount of time has been invested--and lost--in the case).

Common questions about filing for disability in Texas

Filing the appeal in Texas

When your file your appeal, you should indicate recent treatment (new treatment dates or sources since their last denial) sources or even send in the new medical records (keep a copy for yourself just in case they get lost) if you have them. Be sure to complete all information on the disability appeal report form and return any requested forms with your appeal.

Currently, disability appeals can be completed online or through paperwork. No matter which method you choose, remember to return anything that is requested. It is not a bad idea to follow up on your appeal with Social Security with a phone call or visit to the office. Social Security offices are very busy places that often serve hundreds of people everyday; consequently there may be times that things fall through the cracks so to speak. A phone call often will get the ball rolling again if your appeal has not made it out of the Social Security office (to disability determination services where a disability examiner will work on making the medical decision).

About the Author: Tim Moore is a former Social Security Disability Examiner in North Carolina, has been interviewed by the NY Times and the LA Times on the disability system, and is an Accredited Disability Representative (ADR) in North Carolina. For assistance on a disability application or Appeal in NC, click here.

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