Social Security Disability Resource Center
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An SSI disability appeal is better than a new claim
The point of this post is to illustrate a few insights as to why it is better to follow the Social security disability appeals process, versus starting over with a new disability application. And to do that, let me relate a recent experience.
I was speaking to someone the other day who, like me, is a former disability examiner for social security disability and SSI claims. The question that came up was: "What's the biggest unique you ever saw on a new file?"
Ok, I better explain what I mean by this. Unique numbers refer to how many times a disability claimant has filed for social security disability or SSI disability. My answer was 22. My friend had actually seen one as high as 25.
Now, what does all of this mean? Well, here it is: When a person files a claim for SSD or SSI and gets denied, they have three choices: 1. give up completely (and many people do), 2. file an appeal and follow the appeals process, and 3. start over with a brand new application for social security disability or SSI.
If a person decides to start over with a new claim (usually, this is a terrible choice), then you add one to their total unique number. So, for the person whose unique number was 22, this meant that they had filed close to two dozen times.
What's wrong with this? Well, it's not really productive. A person who chooses not to file a Social security disability appeal and instead chooses to begin a new claim will, typically, be denied again. And if they keep starting new claims versus filing an appeal...they will, most likely, be denied over and over and over (get the point?) again.
The reason why a social security disability or SSI claimant should nearly always (I say "nearly always" because there are a limited number of situations in which a new application is the best route, but this is a very limited number of situations) file an appeal is this: ultimately, you want your disability claim to be reviewed at a disability hearing, held by an administrative law judge who specializes in adjudicating social security disability and SSI claims.
But...the only way to get to such a hearing is by requesting an appeal after a disability application has been denied.
And, of course, after that first appeal (known as a reconsideration or review) has been denied, a claimant may request their second appeal, the appeal that actually leads to a hearing in front of a judge.
How long does the appeal process take? Assuming that a claimant does not get approved on their first appeal (the reconsideration or review), and has to appear at a hearing, the appeal process can easily take over 2 years. And, certainly, this sounds impossibly long, both from a medical and financial standpoint.
However, enduring the appeal process is preferable by far to never being approved for disability benefits and I would gather to say that the person who had filed 22 times had probably put several years into the process...with nothing to show for it.
Social Security Disability and SSI Resource Center
The Most Basic questions about Getting Disability Benefits
Social Security Disability SSI and whether or not you can work
Common Mistakes to avoid after being denied for Disability
Social Security Disability SSI Questions and Answers
More Social Security Disability SSI Questions and Answers
Common Questions about Social Security Disability and SSI
Winning Social Security Disability or SSI Benefits
The SSI Disability Benefits Program
Social Security Disability SSI and Doctors - Yours and Theirs
Social Security Disability and SSI Claim Reviews
Social Security Disability SSI System and Benefits for Children
Denials, Appeals, and Getting a Disability Lawyer or Representative
What you should know about Social Security Disability and SSI Denials
Questions about Disability Lawyers and Hiring a Disability Attorney
Various Types of Benefits including SSI, Mental, and Child benefits
Social Security and SSI based on Mental Disability
Social Security Disability or SSI Benefits for Children
Disability Benefits through Social Security
Filing for Social Security Disability or SSI Benefits
Social Security Disability SSI: Medical Evidence and Records
Filing your claim for disability benefits
Eligibility for receiving disability benefits
Resources on this site
Social Security Disability, SSI Terms and Definitions
Previously answered questions regarding SSD and SSI
About the Author of SSDRC, Tim Moore
The SSDRC Disability Blog
For Individuals living in North Carolina
Disability in North Carolina
North Carolina Disability Lawyer
Getting disability in North Carolina
How long does a disability judge have to make a decision?
How to get an SSDI reconsideration approved
Why does Social Security deny you with a lawyer?
If you get denied, do you file a new disability application?
Winning a Social Security Disability Appeal or SSI Appeal
Doing a disability appeal
If you appeal a disability denial, how long does it take for a decision?
How long does it take to go before a disability judge?
How long does it take to be approved and awarded disability benefits?
How long does it take to get disability after applying?
The list of differences between Social Security Disability and SSI
Getting disability approved on a reconsideration with an attorney
Can you speed up a disability claim?
Should I get a lawyer if I have already filed for disability?
If you apply for disability in Texas
Disability requirements in Texas
Qualifying For Disability in Texas
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 answer some of the most basic questions for individuals who are considering filing a claim.
Do I need an attorney to win disability?
How Long Does It Take To Go Before A Judge For Disability?
Will a Judge give you an Immediate Decision at the Disability Hearing?
What happens when you go to a disability hearing?
Social Security Disability SSI and Medical conditions
Social Security Disability lawyer fee
Can a lawyer or attorney speed up my disability case?
When can I expect my first disability check and my back pay check?
Going to a medical exam for Social Security Disability or SSI
Filing for disability - How to file the disability application
Do you need a lawyer to file for disability?
How Far Back Can SSI Back Pay Be Paid?
Can you get temporary Social Security disability or SSI benefits?
The Social Security Disability Award Letter
Social Security Disability SSI Eligibility Requirements
How long will it take to get a disability decision letter?
Social Security Disability and SSI Medical Exams
How long does it take to be approved for SSI or Social Security disability?
How Long to get a Disability Hearing decision?
How long to get disability benefits after you receive an award notice?
Social Security Disability and Working
What makes a person eligible to receive disability benefits?
How To Get Disability Through SSDI or SSI Approved
How Much Income Can A Person Earn If He Draws Social Security Disability?
Partial disability benefits from Social Security
Can I Qualify For Disability for Depression?