Overview of Disability

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How long do cases take?

How to win Disability

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What if you get denied?

How to file Appeals

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Disability Lawyer Q&A

Disability Conditions List

What is a disability?

Your Medical Evidence

Filing for your Disability

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SSD SSI Definitions

Recent Questions

SSDRC Disability Blog

How long does it take for a disability attorney to file a disability appeal?

"I hired an attorney right-away with my initial application. Seven months after my initial claim, I was denied. It has been a week since I received my denial letter. Is it normal for an attorney's office to take so long to file an appeal? Should I have them send me proof that they filed my appeal?"

I generally take the view that a disability appeal be filed as soon as possible following the receipt of a social security notice of denial. The reason, of course, is plain. Though the social security administration allows claimants 60 days in which to file an appeal, there's no reason to add any more days to the total processing time for a case than is absolutely necessary. After all, the longer a case drags on, the more precarious your financial situation may become.

How long it takes a disability attorney to file an appeal, and how they view the urgency of filing appeals, can vary substantially. I know one individual whose office seems to think that as long as the appeal is filed by the deadline date, everything is fine. Obviously, when it comes to preserving the best interests of a disability claimant, that sort of attitude is less than optimal. In the filing of appeals, my own preferred approach has been to do the appeal as soon as the notice of denial is received and to let no grass grow beneath it.

Is it normal for an attorney's office to take a week or more to do a disability appeal? I'm sure that it's not abnormal. Consider, however, that many disability representatives and disability attorneys have support staff that perform such functions and that, oftentimes, these support staff members are juggling multiple tasks and quite a few clients. Therefore, simply to ensure that your own case receives the attention it deserves, it is never a bad idea to contact your representative's office to A) notify them that you have received a notice of denial (just in case they don't receive their copy) and B) to inquire as to when your appeal will be submitted.

If you've already attempted to get the status of the filing of your appeal from your attorney and have not received a call back, you may wish to leave another message stating that you need confirmation that they have received their copy of the denial notice and confirmation that the appeal has been filed or will be filed soon. If you do not get a call back and your attorney is local, you may wish to make a personal visit to your attorney's office. Unannounced drop-bys are not a favorite among many reps (disability representatives with larger caseloads can be fairly busy due to their hearings schedule, preparation for hearings, travel time to hearings, and so forth), but it may get you a quick answer as to the disposition of your appeal.

And, yes, your attorney or non-attorney representative should always send you confirmation that your appeal has been filed (typically a copy of what has been submitted to SSA for your own records).

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

Related pages:

Social Security Disability appeals process
Social Security Administration appeals
Social Security Disability appeals attorney
Denied Social Security Disability after hearing
How to appeal disability denial
How to win SSI Social Security Disability appeal
Social Security Disability appeals attorney
Tips for filing a Social Security Disability Reconsideration
Social Security Disability denial letter and appeal
What happens after you request a disability hearing?
Steps and Tips for requesting a disability hearing
Which medical conditions will social security recognize as a disability?
If I don't get disability back pay, do I pay a lawyer fee?
What is the average time for an answer after a SSDI or SSI disability hearing?
Will I get an increase in my SSI check?
Getting disability and receiving a personal injury settlement
Do disability benefits come from SSI or SSDI?

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

How to file for disability, filing tips
What to Prove to Qualify for Disability Benefits
Applying for disability benefits, SSI and SSDI
What Disabilities Qualify for SSI and Social Security Disability?
Will you get disability back pay?
Social Security Disability And SSI Qualifications
Permanent Disability Qualifications for SSD and SSI
Social Security Disability SSI status
Disability lawyer representation, finding lawyers
Who will qualify for disability and what qualifying is based on
Qualifications for Disability Benefits
Important points about filing for disability
How long does it take to get disability after applying?
Am I Eligible For Social Security Disability?
Who is eligible for SSI disability?
How to get disability in Florida