How to file for disability, Filing for SSI
Disability Requirements, Disability Status
How long is the wait?, Disability Application
The Social Security List of Impairments
Qualifying for Disability, Mental Disability
Disability Lawyer Info, Disability Back Pay

What is the Difference Between a Technical Denial and an Informal Denial?

Technical denials and informal denials are similar in the fact that both denials result in your disability claim being denied prior to a medical determination. However, that is where their similarity ends. So, just what are the differences between a technical and informal denial?

Generally, informal denials involve Supplemental Security Income disability. If a Social Security representative determines that an individual’s income (i.e. wages, Social Security benefits, long or short term disability, workman’s compensation, public disability programs, etc) is too high, or it is determined that an individual has too many resources a.k.a assets (i.e. vehicles, land, homes, retirement plans, stocks, bonds, trust funds, etc.) to qualify for disability in the program, then the social security representative may issue an informal denial.

An informal denial basically saves interview time for the disability applicant, because they will not be required to provide all the information involved in a full claim. Of course, an individual has the right to request a formal denial for Supplemental Security Income disability on the basis of income or resources, however this will require a full disability interview with a claims representative.

Social Security Disability and Supplemental Security Income disability both use technical denials. Basically, you could consider technical denials to be formal non-medical denials.

For instance, as I mentioned above you can request a formal denial for Supplemental Security Income benefits based upon your income or resources. Supplemental Security Income claimants may also receive a technical denial because of substantial gainful work activity. If an individual is working and earning over the substantial gainful activity monthly amount (set each year by Social Security), their disability claim will receive a technical denial and will not be forwarded to the state disability agency for a medical determination.

Social Security Disability technical denials might be based upon the following: 1) lack of insured status (i.e. you have not earned enough quarters to be covered or you have not worked enough in the last ten years to be insured for disability), 2) inability to prove relationship in the case of adult disabled children or disabled widow/ widower disability claims, 3) failure to cooperate (when an individual has not cooperated with the claims representative or disability examiner by providing necessary information needed to forward their disability claim to the state disability agency for a decision), or 4) performance of substantial gainful activity as mentioned above.

All technical and informal denials occur before an individual’s disability claim is sent for a medical determination, except for failure to cooperate technical denials.

What determines if a failure to cooperate denial is a medical or non-medical denial? If the state disability agency denies a disability claim for failure to cooperate, it is considered a medical determination. However, if a claims representative denies the disability claim prior to sending it to the state agency it is considered a non-medical denial.

Since technical denials require an actual determination by Social Security, they also contain appeal rights. This means an individual has certain amount of time to disagree with a decision by requesting that the denial be reconsidered.

Essential Questions

What is the Social Security Disability SSI list of impairments?

Can you work while getting or applying for Disability?

How Often Does Social Security Approve Disability The First Time You Apply?

Tips for getting Social Security Disability or SSI benefits approved

What medical conditions will get you approved for disability?

What kind of Mental Problems Qualify for Disability?

Receiving a Disability Award Letter

Conditions Social Security will recognize as a disability

Previously answered questions regarding SSD and SSI

Applying for disability in your state

Most popular topics on SSDRC.com

Social Security Disability SSI Questions

The listings, list of disabling impairments

Can a mental illness qualify you for disability?

Disability Lawyers prevent unnecessary denials

How much Social Security Disability SSI back pay?

How to apply for disability for a child or children

Filing a Social Security Disability SSI application

Filing for disability - when to file

How to apply for disability - where to apply

Qualifications for disability benefits

How to Prove you are disabled and Win your Disability Benefits

Qualifying for Disability - The Process

How to get disability for depression

Getting disability for fibromyalgia

SSI disability for children with ADHD

What is the Application Process for Social Security Disability and SSI?

Common Mistakes to avoid after being denied for Disability

Social Security Disability SSI Exam tips

More Social Security Disability SSI Questions

Social Security Disability SSI definitions

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New and featured pages on SSDRC.com

Who can help me file for disability?

Related pages:

Winning Social Security Disability Benefits For Mental Disorders
Do I Have To Quit My Job To qualify and Get Disability?
Mental disorders and filing for SSD or SSI
How to start a disability appeal with Social Security
How to file for disability in Missouri
SSI disability Application Requirements
What A Social Security Disability determination is based on
Are you required to have an attorney at a disability hearing?
Filing for disability with aspergers
The amount of back pay that you receive
How to file for disability in New Mexico
Filing for disability with arthritis, osteoarthritis
Should you get a Disability Lawyer before you File
If You Get Social Security Disability or SSI, Will Your Dependents Get A Check?
How to file for disability, tips to start

These pages provide answers to basic questions about pursuing disability benefits

What mental problems qualify for disability?
SSI disability status
How to prove you qualify for disability
Qualifying for disability eligibility requirements
How Does Social Security Decide If You Are Disabled
How much does disability pay?
Factors involved in Winning SSDI or SSI Claims
Applying for disability with Degenerative Disc Disease
How long to get a Social Security decision letter?
What Does Social Security Consider To Be a Disability?
The amount of back pay that you receive
Social Security medical disability determination process
If You Get Approved For SSDI Will You Also Get Medicare?
How long can you receive SSI or Social Security Disability benefits?
How Long Does A Social Security Disability Appeal Take?
How Long Does It Take To Get Disability Benefits When You First File?
Can you work if you get SSI disability?
Social Security Disability attorney fees
Am I eligible to receive disability benefits?
What are the non medical requirements for disability
How to get SSI
Approved for disability benefits
SSD SSI disability hearing decision

For the sake of clarity, SSDRC.com is not the Social Security Administration, nor is it associated or affiliated with SSA. This site is a personal, private website that is published, edited, and maintained by former caseworker and former disability claims examiner, Tim Moore, who was interviewed by the New York Times on the topic of Social Security Disability and SSI benefits in an article entitled "The Disability Mess" and also by the Los Angeles Times on the subject of political attempts to weaken the Social Security Disability system.

The goal of the site is to provide information about how Social Security Disability and SSI work, the idea being that qualified information may help claimants pursue their claims and appeals, potentially avoiding time-consuming mistakes. If you find the information on this site helpful and believe it would be helpful to others, feel free to share links to its homepage or other pages on website resource pages, blogs, or social media. Copying of this material, however, is prohibited.

To learn more about the author, please visit the SSDRC.com homepage and view the "about this site" link near the bottom of the page.